I went into the Marina Bay Sands theatre, not expecting very much. After all, this is a Disney cartoon turned musical. The songs are nice, easy to hear, and popular, but are they good enough for singing on stage? And will there be enough songs to fill the whole story line, or the actors and actresses will need to make up with lots of talking.
For musicals, songs should be the main ingredient, and lines should be used only sparingly to fill in the gaps and make the flow smoother. Will they be able to do that with this one?
It turned out, I was quite surprised. Not only did the producer manage to put together a quite solid and smooth flowing show, they even added some sweet touches to make the experience more exciting and complete, and gave us a lovely night.
The props were well prepared, and the costumes rightly done to successfully portray the image of a Middle Age European country. There were enough casts for the grand performances, and the selection of the main casts was done with some standard, so they could really carry the plot quite well.
The helpers and house keepers in the Beast’s palace were extremely lovely, and the Tea Cup was extremely cute. I can say that it’s the closest they can do in bringing the legendary pictures of Walt Disney into real life. Even their clothes were carefully done to portray their characters as exactly as possible. I’m impressed.
Belle was quite a beauty and her voice was sweet and lovely. The only minus point is the way they built the Beast’s character. First of all, he was not the menacing and fierce character we saw in the movie. He was bulky, and he had horns, but he was not tall, almost same height as Belle, so he could hardly tower over her, let alone Gaston. And he sometimes made weird gestures, jumping around like a monkey, and acting very silly. The Beast can be bad tempered, and can be confused due to the long period of self exile in his castle, but the last thing he should be is acting like a clown and a joke. He should not give anyone any slimmest chance to look down on him that way. In that department, I must say I was a bit disappointed.
Anyway, overall it was quite a good effort. Putting together a musical is never easy, even if you already have a strong story to follow. The production managed to capture the main spirit of the original story that has charmed generations of kids and adults alike. Besides, they also introduced some more songs in an attempt to connect the scenes more smoothly, and even though they fall short in comparison with the originals, kudos to them to at least have the gut to try. And we had a relaxing night. It was not perfect, but definitely not a waste of time and money 🙂
Last but not least, the live cast version is coming soon, and the one playing Belle is none other than beautiful and charming Emma Watson. Looking forward to it very much.