Tony and Emmy winner Tyne Daly stars in the York Theatre Company's spare revival of Jerry Herman's 1969 musical about French Countess Aurelia's efforts to fight big business and save her home. More…
When a group of businessmen scheme to drill for oil in Paris, there is only one force in the world that can stop them: Countess Aurelia, the Madwoman of Chaillot. With the help of idealism, love, and poetry—not to mention two other madwomen, a local garbageman, and a pair of young lovers—the Countess fights to save Paris and the world from greed. Part of the York's 'Musicals in Mufti' series spotlighting classic, underappreciated Broadway musicals. 'Mufti' means 'in everyday clothes, without all the trappings of a large production.' Each show is presented script-in-hand, with minimal staging.
"Tony and Emmy Award winner Tyne Daly makes a triumphant return to golden age musicals as the Countess Aurelia in The York Theatre Company's charming semi-staged concert version of Jerry Herman's much maligned 'Dear World.' The excellent Musicals in Mufti staging by Michael Montel with a top-flight cast also includes such Broadway veterans as Alison Fraser, Ann Harada, Gordon Stanley, Stephen Mo Hanan, Lenny Wolpe, Peter Land and J. Bernard Calloway." Full Review
"The York Theatre Company’s 'Dear World' is perfectly cast. Daly chooses her own reality and breaks our hearts...Fraiser all but steals the show with her wide-eyed insanity and perfect timing. Wolpe gets the most out of his role with his clear vocals and stamp on reality...The direction by Michael Montel is simple, yet effective...David Thompson’s adaptation is relevant to today." Full Review
"This production was a total delight. Tyne Daly took the lead role of Countess Aurelia, and she was nothing short of magical...It is full of romance and humor and some excellent songs from Jerry Herman...The trio sung by the three madwomen is as much fun as anything you'll see on a stage, and Daly, Alison Fraser, and Ann Harada nailed it. The rest of the cast was also excellent, with some gorgeous, gorgeous voices." Full Review
"As with so many failed musicals, the problem lies with the book, which is far too slight and precious to be involving...While the score is not one of Herman’s finest, it does display his gift for gorgeous melodies...Daly delivers a deliciously appealing comic performance that single-handedly justifies this incarnation...Considering the circumstances, director Michael Montel gives the musical an extremely polished staging." Full Review
"Ms. Daly was a bit tentative at first but soon moved solidly into the role...'Dear World'...has always been problematical for its mix of reality and flights of fancy in the imaginative plot and bizarre characterizations. Its best quality is charm, and the cast in the Mufti production handily conveys that aspect of the work as it progresses...Alison Fraser is a hoot as Madame Constance, the Madwoman of the Market, and Ann Harada is amusing as the Madwoman of Montmarte." Full Review
"Tyne Daly is dotty, tender, stubborn, and, in context, believable. She’s chosen to deliver her lines in short, nervous, blinking phrases adding to personality. Moments of deep recollection are emphatically touching. Daly’s voice is open-throated and fine...Director Michael Montel might have a little more fun with his characters. McGovern and Tucci provide splendid arrangements and musicianship...Not one of Jerry Herman’s best efforts, but still rather charming in its entirety." Full Review
"'Dear World' is a perfect show for the current state of the world...This new scaled-down production works very well and makes for an entertaining and relevant story. This version stars Tony Award-winning actress Tyne Daly. She is not much of a singer, the score is not really memorable anyway, but her acting definitely shows there is a reason she has won all of those awards...See the work of these fine actresses and the rest of the talented cast in the intimate setting of the York Theatre." Full Review
"The juicy characters and the divine music and lyrics are a good enough reason to enjoy the York Theatre's concert mounting…Daly certainly charged into her role with moxie, but she didn't seem comfortable with her songs, frequently speaking the lyrics, and there was little realization of the poetic eccentricity written into the script...On the other hand, Alison Fraser...fully embodies the tone of the show...Likewise, Ann Harada...is a daffy treat." Full Review
"Despite the rewrite, it seemed to me that the characters were only superficial caricatures and the situations felt a little forced. Nonetheless, the concept provides a platform for some wonderfully witty songs and for some outrageously hilarious portrayals...Although 'Dear World' has a worthwhile message and some wonderfully entertaining moments, I can understand why it never won more positive attention. Still, I’m happy that the York brought 'Dear World' to the stage." Full Review
“A mediocre score and a story line that devolves into parable…We must forgive Ms. Daly her French accent that waivers across international borders…There is no other actor as good at displaying wordless despair, and her quiet moments of remembering her old love are touching…Ms. Fraser is hilarious as the elderly and quite dizzy Constance…Ms. Henningsen gets a ballad that comes out of nowhere, and we are all the better for it...Her lovely voice elevates the entire production." Full Review
See it if you love Jerry Herman, Tyne Daly, and want to catch a rare performance of an even rarer musical gem from the late 60s.
Don't see it if you need a totally polished production to be happy. They are on book with minimal set and costumes.
See it if You love Jerry Herman musicals or spectacular performances
Don't see it if You require elaborately staged musicals for enjoyment (this is part of York's Musicals in Mufti, or streetclothes, series),
See it if you want to experience a not-so-known musical by Jerry Herman and want to be charmed by Tyne Daly.
Don't see it if you are looking for a full-blown production with a "Hello, Dolly!" plot and well-known songs.
See it if you like tuneful songs, strong cast, musicals that aren't revived often, (usually with good reason), supporting small theater efforts.
Don't see it if you want glitzy production values or hate "not fully produced" performances. Actors are on book, and there are only two musicians.
See it if you like "lost" musicals in a semi-concert staging & you want to see proof that Tyne Daly is still & always an epic musical theater talent.
Don't see it if The book is weak & not all the songs are memorable, but I simply would not have missed this for the (Dear) World. Hurray for Mufti at York!
See it if If you're a Jerry Herman and Tyne Daly fan. The rest of the cast is pretty darn good too. For a musical from 1969, it's scarily relevant.
Don't see it if If you don't enjoy musicals on book, or a performance without an orchestra or big staging.
See it if Tyne Daly, Ann Harada, Alison Fraser,all up-front and personal. Herman confection. Rarely produced musical. Theater history in a sm. house
Don't see it if Uncomfortable with unpolished and lack of poise. Actors with books.
See it if you like classic musicals of the golden age - this one a sort of chamber musical with charming story & evocative score. Great performances!
Don't see it if you want something edgy. This is a chance to see the great Tyne Daly & a strong cast in an intimate theater space in a very sweet musical.
See it if you love hearing good voices sing lovely songs and if you want to be reminded about the evils of oil exploration and the greed of some.
Don't see it if you want the singers to know the words to songs and lines without having to look at a script. Do not see it if you want a full orchestra.
See it if Want to see a forgotten Jerry Herman musical. And Tyne Daly! The whole cast is excellent, but did I mention Tyne Daly in a 200 seat hous
Don't see it if Want a big production or deep meaning
See it if You don't mind "Encores! Light", people with scripts, no staging, but sparkling performances of a little seen show.
Don't see it if You need a big production, an orchestra, costumes, or want a "current" edgy show. It's definitely a throwback, but pleasant.
See it if you're a Herman fan, esp'ly if you've never seen DW. Bare bones production is fun, thanks to a strong cast. Some good songs, timely content.
Don't see it if you dislike staged readings.Actors on book. Only piano, bass, & accordion.. Show is wacky, but theme of evil rich men echoes in the present.
See it if you're a Jerry Herman fan, curious about infrequently revived musicals, or a lover of strong musical theatre casting.
Don't see it if you expect pitch- & letter-perfect performances; in Musicals in Mufti, the cast is on book, and there often can be missed cues and misfires.
See it if you are interested in seeing a rarely-done Jerry Herman musical with a few great songs and a strong cast.
Don't see it if you can't get over a problematic book. Maybe it's been pared down too much, but it's easy to see why this wouldn't be a hit.
Also Alison Fraser is a national treasure.
See it if you are a lover of Musical Theatre and never seen this lesser known Jerry Herman shoulda been classic.
Don't see it if you don't want to deal with a bare bones production of a lush score with an extremely whittled down book.
See it if you adore Tyne Daley and the Jerry Herman score, and generally like the concert version style of Musicals at Mufti
Don't see it if you' re unfamiliar with the piece and don't have the best hearing. There are no mikes, and Daley & Fraser's accents are difficult at times.
See it if you love Tyne Daly, or want to take advantage of a very rare opportunity to see a lesser known work by Jerry Herman
Don't see it if you want a polished production (even going by mufti standards), you hate musicals with mediocre scores and a bad book.
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