ISO and Guests Breathe Fresh Life into Yuletide Celebration
It remains a wonderfully hopeful and care-releasing show in the Symphony’s season, apt to melt even the most resistant audience member’s icy viscera.
1. Indy snagged the show’s world premiere. Why? It just so happens that Jack Everly, principal pops conductor of the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra, fills that same role for the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra. Baltimore, as any hair hopper knows, is the hometown of John Waters, creator of the original 1988 movie Hairspray, and the setting for that and all of his other films. Everly is known for taking Broadway shows, which increasingly rely on synthesized music to save money, and creating concert versions that place a full-scale orchestra right on stage with the actors. The result: lush, symphonic sound for numbers like “You Can’t Stop the Beat” and “Good Morning Baltimore,” with just enough scenery, choreography, costumes, and dialogue to lend a theatrical atmosphere. Given the experience of Everly, an Indy native, the show (based on the Tony Award–winning 2002 Broadway rendition and subsequent movie remake) ended up debuting here today at an 11 a.m. Coffee Concert; it heads to Baltimore in two weeks.