AFTER A SPATE of disasters, delays and a major re-mastering, the Spider-Man musical has finally opened in Broadway, New York.
Bono and the Edge composed the music for the show and the musical’s previews were beset with problems ranging from accidents onstage to being cited by US federal regulators breaching work safety practices, which delayed the official opening several times.
Late last year, after problems had begun to strike, Bono admitted he was worried it would never “get out the gate” and the version which was previewed earlier this year was overhauled before its official opening last night.
Marking that the show’s opening night had (finally) arrived, Sesame Street created a sketch featuring Bono wearing his signature shades in the musical SpiderMonster: The Musical:
Theatre critics’ reviews of the show’s opening . Hollywood Reporter has published a round-up of the opening night’s reviews, including its own review which warns audiences that the show has been “significantly overhauled”, it remains as “misconceived” as the first version, which ran for 183 previews.
The New York Times simply describes it as a “bore”, while IndieWire is more direct saying: “Act I sucks. Really, really bad. Act II sucks less”. The Telegraph’s review says that although “slicker and more comprehensible” than the earlier version, “this remains a stubbornly unlovable show that never comes close to matching the thrills, the humour or the emotional depth of the Spider-Man movies.”
IrishCentral’s reviewer, however, said that he was amazed by the set design, costumes and “technical wizardry”. He enjoyed the music, too: “When you hear Edge’s soaring guitar I defy you to remain unmoved.”
The show’s ousted musical director, Julie Taymor, appeared on stage for an unexpected reunion with Bono. The two hadn’t spoken since Taymor was removed from the show three months ago, but the New York Times reports that Bono called her last week to encourage her to attend.
Famous faces in the audience for opening night included Liam Neeson, Steve Martin, Andrew Lloyd Webber and former US President Bill Clinton, who sat beside Bono throughout the performance. The NYT noted Clinton appeared to particularly enjoy a scene in which the Green Goblin is irritated by an elaborate voice mail system.
[caption id="attachment_156439" align="alignnone" width="512" caption="The cast of Spider-Man onstage after the performance. (Image: Charles Sykes/AP/Press Association Images)"][/caption]