The Westchester Broadway Theatre will present a new production of Nine, starring Robert Cuccioli as Guido with Jonathan Stahl taking the seemingly inseparable director-choreographer task of staging the show.
What’s the real news? Well, the website says that one or more of the new songs that Maury Yeston wrote for the film version of Nine will appear in the stage production. Seriously?
Will it be the poorly integrated “Cinema Italiano”, a fine pop song, but one that doesn’t fit in with the rest of the score at all? How about “Take It All”, a song that has surely contributed to uniformly rave reviews for Marion Cotillard’s performance in the film, but which musically sounds like it belongs to the mistress and not the wife? (I suppose that’s what happens when you create a song for three characters, realise it doesn’t work way that and then reallocate it to just one without considering the implications of how not only the lyrics but the music itself makes meaning in a musical. Perhaps the stage production is thinking of going back to the concept of the song as a trio? Who knows?) Or will “Guarda la Luna” simply replace the titular tune as it did in the film?
Whatever the decision – so much for Yeston’s prior stance that the work done for the film was necessary to adapt the stage score for the new medium and that the stage version still existed as a separate entity. I guess the generally poor reception of the film has done little to convince anyone of how easy it would be to compromise the artistic integrity of the stage show by incorporating any of them. What’s next? The incorporation of “My Heart Will Go On” into the next major revival of Titanic?