WAITRESS

Jessie Mueller Waitress 2

** 1/2

I have to admit: WAITRESS, BRIGHT STAR and SHE LOVES ME are pretty much a Romantic-Musical-Comedy blur to me. The specific joys of WAITRESS are the wonderful score by Sara Bareilles which include some sophisticated lyrics and tunes with strong pop hooks, the handsome and adept physical comedian Drew Gehling as the inappropriate love interest, the always delightful scene stealer Christopher Fitzgerald and the big-hearted, wide open soul with a voice that soars, Jessie Mueller.

What it’s missing is a decent sound design. I lost about 1/3rd of the lyrics to muffled sound (I was sitting in the 8th row, center orchestra). I found it even more disconcerting because the cast all wear those little round mouth mics (think 1990’s Madonna) instead of the usual tiny mics in their wigs. So much for the Tony Committee deciding that Sound Design isn’t important enough to be recognized.

My other big problem is that, for a musical touted as having a landmark all-female creative team*, the resolution to the Waitress’ financial problems comes by way of a gift from a MAN.  I understand that they are mirroring the movie, but with that many “sisters” in control, why wouldn’t they fix this glaring stroke of misogyny?

FaceBook Page: Reinstate the Tony for Sound Design

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*BTW – All but one of the designers is male.