Review: Kinky Boots on Broadway




I met up with my friend +Sandy Mae Gaspay in Manhattan after her business trip in Detroit. We decided to watch a musical on Broadway so we booked tickets in advance for Kinky Boots at the Al Hirschfeld Theatre. It was my first broadway show so naturally I have no high expectations. Kinky Boots was based on a book by Harvey Fierstein with music and lyrics by the "True Colors" singer Cyndi Lauper. 




Tony and Grammy Award winning Kinky Boots star Billy Porter plays the character Lola, a drag queen, who meets Charlie Price (played by Andy Kelso) by chance and subsequently becomes the designer/partner in Charlie's struggling shoe factory during the first act. After Charlie's father passed away he inherited the family business along with its financial troubles, forcing him to stay in Northampton while his ambitious fiancĂ©e left him to move to London. Lola convinces Charlie to make shoes for cross-dressers/drag queens to save the family business. 


Lola's character although slightly expected is somehow less predictable. I think it is relatively harder for a character to develop depth and personality in a broadway musical due to its short duration unlike in a TV show. Nevertheless, Porter delivered a moving performance that easily made Lola my favorite character. Lola explained that during her youth, she was trained at boxing by her professional boxer father who had issues with her homosexuality and later disowned her. Kinky Boots teaches tolerance and overcoming homophobia. At the shoe factory, Lola was met with mockery and bigotry from the guys including Don who challenged her to a boxing match to see who is the better "man". Lola agreed to the challenge if Don would agree to do one thing she spelled out.



+Sandy Mae Gaspay  as Lola

During the second act, Lola could have easily won the match because of her training but lets Don win instead. Charlie and Lola had a heated argument in the midst of preparations for the fashion show in Milan. Charlie left for Milan and realized that the show is a fiasco without Lola while Lola had another commitment to sing for the elderly at a nursing home. At the end of her powerful ballad, Lola approached an elderly man sitting on a wheelchair who turned out to be...




Overall, Kinky Boots is a fabulous showstopper with the powerful performance of Billy Porter and the rest of the ensemble. It's a good mix of drama, comedy and Cindy Lauper's catchy music. For a preview of "Sex Is in the Heel" click here


Kinky Boots is about accepting someone for who they are.





 


Other posts about New York City:




No comments:

Post a Comment