Jekyll and Hyde

For a musical that never got any respect — the New York Times review from the 1997 premiere is downright withering, as were most of the other Big Apple opinions — Jekyll and Hyde has had an amazing life. It ran for three and a half years on Broadway (1,543 performances) and still managed to lose $1.5 million, yet Frank Wildhorn’s most dramatic production has a devoted cultlike following, the Hyde-heads, who bestow upon the show a quasi-religious veneration.

The musical, developed by our own Theater Under the Stars and the Alley Theatre, with lyrics by two-time Oscar-winning lyricist Leslie Bricusse (Dr. Doolittle and Victor/Victoria), has its share of pop anthems and campy operetta moments, but it has an entertaining, high-drama quotient that is unbeatable in live theater, especially when produced by Houston’s own live-wire musical company, Masquerade Theatre. Those phenomenal voices will put appropriate oomph into the showstoppers “Once Upon a Dream,” “A New Life” and “In His Eyes.” And you can’t knock a score whose big number, “This Is the Moment,” was performed at the Olympics, the Miss America Pageant and the Democratic Convention. 7:30 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays, 2 p.m. Sundays. Through May 29. Hobby Center, 800 Bagby. For information, call 713-861-7045 or visit www.masqueradetheatre.com. $36.25 to $66.25.
Fridays-Sundays. Starts: May 20. Continues through May 29, 2011

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D.L. Groover has contributed to countless reputable publications including the Houston Press since 2003. His theater criticism has earned him a national award from the Association of Alternative Newsmedia (AAN) as well as three statewide Lone Star Press Awards for the same. He's co-author of the irreverent appreciation, Skeletons from the Opera Closet (St. Martin's Press), now in its fourth printing.
Contact: D. L. Groover