Benanti – The Fairest Lady

Since I was at Lincoln Center, I sauntered across the plaza and FINALLY saw the revival of My Fair Lady.  I went primarily for the luminous Laura Benanti, who is fulfilling a lifelong dream by playing Eliza Doolittle.  To say the role fit like a glove isn’t quite right – it was actually more like second skin.  Obviously she can sing beautifully.  But, more than that – she acted the role to perfection.  Her commitment is peerless and her ability is inestimable.  I just wish her Eliza were a trifle less dour and had a bit more charm and spunk – especially in her early scenes.  But my hunch is that’s a remnant of the person Benanti replaces in the cast – or perhaps part of director Bartlett Sher’s vision, which takes a serious look at gender roles and sexual dynamics.  It makes the show more timely than ever.  Truly, it’s impossible to fault anything in this luxurious production.  The sets, the orchestra, the costumes, the cast – everything is simply perfection.  In fact, if NBC is seriously looking for a family-friendly musical to do live, this is it – cast and all.  Having Harry Hadden-Paton opposite Benanti is a stroke of luck.  Not only does he fit the traditional role of Higgins to a T, the duo’s constantly evolving dynamics work on every level.  And, what can one say about Rosemary Harris – it is simply an honor to be in her presence.  Benanti has extended her run through July 7th, and it would be a crime to miss this piece of magic should you be in NYC.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

error: Copying content from is prohibited