"For several reasons, all amply demonstrated in the two-actor version of 'Daddy Long Legs' that opened Off Broadway tonight, the epistolary form is absolutely deadly for a musical — especially one with 27 numbers that is all but sung-through. In this configuration, a libretto cannot keep a secret; we know the identity of the benefactor from the start. (Hint: He is the guy onstage.) And where there is no surprise, there can only be interminable waiting." Full Review
"The physical distance our lovers are required to maintain is one of the show's biggest hurdles, for which Caird finds creative solutions...The greatest impediment to their epistolary chemistry is the plot's crawling pace. Each letter nudges their relationship along, but rather than building layers of tension, the musical proves too slight to hold up under the burden of its two hefty acts." Full Review
"McGinnis soon charms us, sweeping us along on her adventures as a college girl-turned-writer…Nolan is as sweetly sympathetic here they help make the most of 'Daddy Long Legs'…The new show is staged effectively…But the letter-by-letter format inevitably leads to too many similar sections, and the authors are mighty lucky to have McGinnis center-stage. With McGinnis and Nolan playing the romance, 'Daddy Long Legs' has charm to spare." Full Review
"It's engaging enough in the first act, but by the second half, the will-they-or-won't-they tension gets buried under too many reprises and a syrupy pace and tone. Save for diehard romantics, this may be one musical audiences will want to write off." Full Review
"The authors may sometimes have overindulged a bit; the leisurely first act is a little too meticulous about making, and remaking, its points...Still, everyone involved eloquently explores the contours of this strange relationship, in which intimacy and distance share an embrace, and they provide it with a most satisfying resolution. 'Daddy Long Legs,' for all its occasional air of old lace, proves to be a lovely little thing, and with a surprising amount of gumption, to boot." Full Review
"A sweet, beautifully sung and only occasionally unsettling musical adaptation...Mr. Gordon’s music and lyrics have a charm and ease, though the songs can blur into one another in ways that are sometimes purposeful and sometimes not. Mr. Caird’s book is appealing and his direction more or less nimble. Seen through modern eyes, the story does have its creepy undertones, though Mr. Caird’s direction avoids the merest hint of sexual suggestion, which does a lot to de-sleaze the relationship" Full Review
"Off-Broadway's 'Daddy Long Legs' is an unimaginative miniature employing almost every cliche, musically and dramatically...The story may have been charming in 1912, but it lacks tension and surprise today...Fortunately, Megan McGinnis and Paul Alexander Nolan endow the two roles with wit and rich voice, making this postcard-sized show bearable for an overlong two acts." Full Review
"In a program note for 'Daddy Long Legs,' director John Caird wonders why the 1912 novel on which the musical is based isn’t considered a great American classic. I wonder the opposite – why its problematic premise has inspired a 16-character Broadway play, at least seven movies and now a two-character Off-Broadway musical...None of 'Daddy Long Legs' would work as well without the two performers who constitute the entire cast." Full Review
“'Daddy Long Legs' is chomping at the bit to have the training wheels removed so it can take off for a big adventure...As it stands, the book here is over written and slightly repetitive...What I wouldn’t give for a couple of sub-plots to thicken the plot. The music it self has great variety. At times these performers make the entire caboodle transcendent. We just don’t need ALL of it." Full Review
"A sweet but too-frequently static, two-actor chamber musical adaptation of Jean Webster’s still-read 1912 epistolary novel...The contrived situation is interesting up to a certain point, after which it becomes a matter of diminishing returns as you wait impatiently for the inevitable resolution...Gordon’s score, while pleasantly melodic and listenable, too often acts as generic underpinning to narrative lyrics, making one song sound like any other." Full Review
"There's little here that seems to crave this form of storytelling. Caird's staging of it all isn't bad, but it's necessarily restricted; he keeps us from being bored, but just barely, and doesn't take us much further than that. Over nearly two and a half hours of play time, that's not enough...This 'Daddy Long Legs' has some real virtues, but it may as well be marked 'return to sender.'" Full Review
"Caird’s book and Gordon’s songs are especially effective, making us care, even though we know the outcome. 'Daddy Long Legs' is a moving show, with exquisite arrangements by Gordon and Brad Haak who make pains of the soul vocal in the musical underscoring...Go experience this romantic musical that will touch your heart and remind you of simpler times." Full Review
"Blessed with a glorious voice, a glowing smile that can quickly turn upside down, and a rare combination of strength and vulnerability, McGinnis practically commands our love and respect..A show that should be a 90-minute heart-tugger instead of a 2 ½-hour tuner that occasionally tests the patience of the mind and the tuchas...Paul Gordon can write wonderful songs...But many of them are filled with little more than minutiae." Full Review
"There's a sweet old-fashioned quality about this two-hander...Like so many in his generation of composers, Gordon has created a score that is heavily influenced by Stephen Sondheim. The melodies aren't as complex and the lyrics aren't are as clever as Sondheim's but the songs are pleasant and they're beautifully sung." Full Review
"A feel-good two character musical that does a really fine job of transporting its audience to a gentler time and place. It’s a fairytale of kindness and spirit that ends as a sweet love story...'Daddy Long Legs' is a satisfying change of pace reminding us of times when theater didn’t have to tax the brain or push the envelope." Full Review
"'Daddy Long Legs' is beautifully cast...The singers' voices blend smoothly, and the vocal arrangements yield some felicitous surprises...It runs a trifle long in the final scenes, but only a trifle. There's so much that's engaging about the show." Full Review
"I really did not like the show itself... The whole time the teenage girl thinks that her benefactor is very old when he’s really only a few years her senior. But that doesn’t make it any less creepy. I hate that this is a story in which the male figure has all the power and the female figure is in a subservient position. I found the music forgettable (it all sounds so similar, like the same few songs are on repeat) and that was a bummer." Full Review
"The casting is spot on...McGinnis delivers a layered, emotional portrayal of a feisty young woman strong in her convictions and aspirations, yet frustrated by a relationship she does not fully understand...Nolan is the perfect, straight match to her spunk. His is a highly controlled, yet impassioned performance...It proves to be a satisfying and emotionally engaging theatrical work." Full Review
"There is no hard drama here, and it is not missed. Instead, the story flows well as a simple coming-of-age story that also blossoms into love. The trials of life, learning who you are as a person and ultimately what you want to become, are enough to carry the story eloquently, especially with the duo of McGinnis and Nolan. And most importantly, it reminds us all that in this fast-paced world there is nothing quite like real human love or true connections." Full Review
"In addition to their impeccable acting, both McGuinness and Nolan have strong and beautiful voices that bring this melodious and inspired score to life...This is a delightful musical that will warm your heart on a chilly fall evening." Full Review
"If you are in search of a charming evening, look no further than this production of 'Daddy Long Legs.' Not only is it endearing and syrupy sweet, it is a lovely break from the modern world of texts and tweets and may inspire you to write a letter of your own." Full Review
"The story revolves around her, and in spite of the fact that she’s onstage nearly all the time, we never get bored with her. This is star quality...This production of 'Daddy Long Legs' is a theater experience to savor, and if the heavens are in alignment, a good chance to see two extraordinary performers who may well be destined for stardom." Full Review
for a previous production "Confession: I’m a sucker for a romantic reunion. When lost-presumed-dead twins Sebastian and Viola rediscover one another alive at the end of 'Twelfth Night,' you’ll find me in tears. All of which makes me more than well-matched for the musical-theatre version of the romance 'Daddy Long Legs.' Dear Reader, I remained dry-eyed." Full Review
for a previous production "Librettist-helmer John Caird has reclaimed Jean Webster’s 1912 bestseller for a wholesome tuner in tune with the times, bolstered by winsome melodies from Paul Gordon. Assessment of show’s full potential must await redress of a serious casting imbalance in the Rubicon Theater premiere, but the signs are positive." Full Review
See it if If you like a really entertaining and heartfelt night at the theatre with beautiful music and performances.
Don't see it if If you want a large show with heavy dance numbers.
See it if you want to see a beautiful library set and a cliched story of a feminist trapped in sexist times but forging "her own way" kind of.
Don't see it if you are looking for a progressive production where the ultimate story isn't boy gets girl, especially when boy has been an asshole.
See it if You enjoy romantic, lyrically beautiful musical comedy with a feminist theme and happy ending
Don't see it if You think a woman's place is only in the kitchen or the bedroom, are tone deaf or do not enjoy musicals
See it if You like unique voices that meld gorgeously. Excellent use of small stage and props. I sent 4 others. 2 actors 2 roles= more than 2
Don't see it if You mind a heavy, plodding plot, telegraphing every scene. You dont like two handers.
See it if You like to be pleasantly surprised, and aren't a snob who only sees "big" musicals. This was a small delight.
Don't see it if You're looking for something to change your life. This was a small romantic show done well.
See it if You enjoy intimate plays in intimate settings with intimate performances. Beautiful use of a small stage, wonderfully well sung and acted.
Don't see it if You need your musicals with jazz hands and back-up dancers. Not all the songs are spot on, but the two actors are phenomenal and intimate.
See it if you want a lovely 2 person musical with a glorious score and absolutely charming performers - will carry you away to another time
Don't see it if you can't get into an old-fashioned story, don't like fantasy and romance
See it if I was charmed by this romantic musical about an orphan and her secret benefactor; it depicts her growth of independence & his growth of love
Don't see it if Takes place in 1911 and is a small, 2 person play. Mostly sung, it's lovely and will capture your heart. It's old fashioned in a good way.
See it if a sweet love story told completely through letters with great costumes gentle humor and poetic language is what you want to see.
Don't see it if You're looking for a highly dramatic plot with lots of action and frantic voices screaming the dialogue. You want a contemporary love story.
See it if You like story that involves letters, you want a pleasant evening, you're a little old-fashioned, you like cozy plots, nice singing, acting.
Don't see it if You want something profound, don't like stories that aren't modern day, want a lot of action, don't like musicals with singing but no dance.
See it if Like literature brought to live. Charming performances by both actors. Great set. Beautiful music. Lovely story.
Don't see it if like fast moving shows its a slow boil. You keep waiting for what happens at the end, when it happens it's wonderful. Music sounds similar
See it if you want to see a simple, romantic story with great costumes and amazing voices. Very charming and engaging. A lovely, intimate piece.
Don't see it if if you wan a big blockbuster that blasts you out of your seat.
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