Wednesday, March 23, 2005

Hotel Rwanda: The Musical

Just got back from seeing the musical adaptation of Hotel Rwanda. It's excellent! I don't know if it's going to tour or anything, but if it winds up in your city, it's a must see.

The genocidal dance numbers are breathtaking. Don Cheadle had a scheduling conflict and doesn't appear at all, but they got Malcolm Jamal Warner instead. His accent is more Bronx than Hutu, although after the first three quarters of the musical, you hardly notice it.

To be fair, I don't think the sequined machetes worked very well. I thought they took away from the horror. Nevertheless, the artistry on the sequins was tremendous. Also, do Hutu soldiers wear camouflaged feather headdresses? That seemed a little off. I'm not an expert on the region so they very well may.

One thing you'll notice about the production is its verisimilitude. Even though I saw the production in an art deco theater near downtown Los Angeles, I felt like I was at the actual Hotel. Turns out the director is an actual Hutu immigrant and was fanatical about getting every little detail right. At one point in the show, you really think the soldiers are firing off rounds of ammunition into the audience. I read later that they were. So the screaming chaos and bloodshed is palpable, and brings the horror of the situation home.

I'm not a theater critic at all, but I feel confident in recommending this musical as a must see. Check it out.


Idea Assassin said...

I hear the song "I Left My Heart in a Hutu Warlord's Trophy Case" is moving as well.

Mr. Bloggerific Himself said...

Sounds like a raincoat is required, much like a Gallagher show.

Healer2K said...

Now WHY am I hearing "Springtime for Hitler and Germany" playing in my head?