So, who watched “Grease Live” and what did you think? Let us know in comments.
The show isn’t quite over here yet, but, I have loved every single minute. Julianne Hough was the perfect “Sandy”! In fact, I thought all the actors picked have been just perfect!! All the performances have just been excellent!!
Also, if you weren’t able to see the show, note that @Idolxfactor is putting up some highlights as I type. To see them, go Idolxfactor.com HERE! Below is one to get you started. Thanks Al!
ETA: Wow, I have not seen one bad press review of “Grease Live” (so far). I’m not going to post them all, but, here are a few that sum it up. Be sure to go to the links to read more….
Fox’s highly anticipated Grease: Live aired Sunday night and, despite the many, many ways it could have been a total train wreck, the performance went off without a hitch.
In fact, it wasn’t just well-executed, it was spectacular! From the complex orchestration to the huge ensemble cast, everything was pulled off to perfection, and accomplished with the sort of enthusiastic ambition that people have been looking for from prior live televised musicals that have been staged in recent years.
….Aaron Tveit’s Danny Zuko, Julianne Hough’s Sandy and (perhaps most of all) Vanessa Hudgens’ Rizzo made Fox’s three-hour production faster, funnier, sweeter and more instantly iconic than it was possible to imagine.
Buoyed by tremendous camera work, fleet-footed choreography, a kicky cast in which no one laid claim to “weak link” status, and a sound mix that was fuller (or less tinny) than any comparable production that’s come before it, Grease built on the live (but not in front of a live audience) musicals championed by rival NBC over the last three years.
Right from Jessie J.’s opening “Grease Is the Word” — in which the pop star managed to trek through seemingly two miles of backstage passageways and show sets — the tone was set: There wasn’t a minuscule detail that director Thomas Kail (Hamilton) overlooked. OK, there were about 30 seconds of lost audio during “Born to Hand Jive” — but that just reinforced the fact that everything happening was terrifyingly of-the-moment.
Mashable thanked FOX for raising the bar and this….
But the wait was worth it.
The ensemble for the performance — directed by Thomas Kail (Hamilton) and Alex Rudzinski— was full of talented actors including Broadway babe Aaron Tveit (Les Miserables) as leading T-Bird Danny Zuko, Keke Palmer (Scream Queens) as the sassy Pink Lady Marty Maraschino, Carlos PenaVega (Big Time Rush) as Danny’s tough-guy sidekick Kenickie, and Grammy-nominated pop artist Carly Rae Jepsen as beauty school dropout Frenchy.
Hough and Tveit had natural chemistry that was electrifying (sorry, had to get another Grease pun in there). Palmer’s performance — and speedy outfit change — in “Freddy My Love” was equally as mesmerizing.
Meanwhile, Hudgens, who had announced the death of her father just hours before the final show, gave everyone chills with her solo “There Are Worse Things I Could Do.” Her show stopping number, and poise amid such a heartbreaking loss, proved she has certainly grown up from her Disney Channel roots.
Grease: Live threw down the gauntlet early and often—opening with a quick scene of lovestruck teens Sandy and Danny at the tail end of their summer romance before pulling back the camera to show stars Julianne Hough and Aaron Tveit backstage on the show’s massive soundstage. For her opening performance of “Grease”, Jessie J (and a talented steadicam operator) traveled through the production’s byzantine sets—including a rainy outdoor locale—while interacting with the cast and acknowledging that, yes, what you’re about to see is highly theatrical.
Peter Pan Live! made stabs at adding cinematic movement to its camera work (something neither The Sound Of Music Live! nor The Wiz Live! really did), but it doesn’t hold a candle to Grease: Live’s truly impressive cinematography, which made the entire production feel more like a movie musical than a stage play. Some of the big ensemble numbers were just stunning to watch, particularly the high school dance sequence that culminated in an exhilarating performance of “Hand Jive” (sung by none other than Joe Jonas). The camera fluidly weaved among the cast as they threw themselves (quite literally) into Zach Woodlee’s dazzling choreography.
CNN said “it’s a hit”. Here’s more….
Fox’s live TV musical overcame technical glitches, a rare Los Angeles rainstorm and the death of a key cast member’s father to score rave reviews on social media and elsewhere.
“This production wasn’t about hitting notes or taking breath, but rather about making things breathtaking. And time after time, ‘Grease: Live’ succeeded,” wrote Daniel Fienberg in The Hollywood Reporter.
“In this moment overrun with must-see TV events, Grease wasn’t just live. It was alive,” gushed Entertainment Weekly’s Darren Franich.
Some other critics were less kind, citing the sometimes-clunky acting between the big musical numbers. But in the court of popular opinion — Facebook and Twitter — the show was a worthy successor to the classic John Travolta-Olivia Newton-John movie.
Also, don’t miss seeing Pure Derek Hough as Derek Hough couldn’t be more proud of his sister. So much so, he was in tears.
Be sure to let us know what you thought of the show in comments if you haven’t yet. I still haven’t recovered from what I saw last night. And the dancing…..I’m passing out and can’t wait to watch it all again.