Bernadette Peters picture
CDs & Film
My Profile
Bernadette Peters Broadway's Best Home Page

Topic: Patti LuPone in Gypsy

Topic Patti LuPone in Gypsy from the Theatre Chat forum.

Post a reply or begin a new topic.

View other threads or jump to a different forum.

Search Forum:
AuthorTopic:   Patti LuPone in Gypsy
Registered User

posted: 8/16/2006 at 9:41:53 PM ET
View Karen's profile  Send a Personal Message to Karen  See Karen's Photo Collection!  Edit/Delete this message  Reply with a quote  

Just for the record, I figured I might as well mention that I saw the first two of Patti LuPone's three performances as Rose last weekend at the Ravinia Festival in suburban Chicago. I'm not going to go into a lot of detail, but suffice it to say that Patti couldn't hold a candle to what Bernadette did with the role on Broadway.

It was billed as a concert version so I was expecting something much more informal than it turned out to be. It was actually a fully staged production--minimalist, but fully staged--and extremely well done. The first night Patti wasn't ready and basically walked through the role, only fitfully coming alive in a few scenes. That was disappointing but completely understandable.

The second night, Saturday, she seemed to get her bearings and settle into the role. She was quite good; vocally strong, solid, reliable, professional...and kind of dull. No, not really dull. Maybe just a tad predictable? She never surprised me. It was a traditional, typical, conventional Rose. It was the Mama Rose that generations have come to know through numerous performances by many actresses from Broadway to film to community theatre. As such it was as well done as it could have been. BUT, somehow I expected more, naturally.

Now comes the part where I say that seeing this "good but not great" Patti LuPone performance made me realize even more acutely than ever the full magnificance of Bernadette's accomplishment. Well, it did! Bernadette completely created the character fresh from scratch. Somehow she put all of her predecessors out of mind and played Rose as though she had never been played by anyone before. I guess I'm only starting now to realize that's essentially almost impossible yet somehow she managed to do it. Patti LuPone couldn't do it. Maybe no one other than Bernadette could ever do it.

Anyway, it was great to see and a fun experience and very entertaining, but it was never stunning or chilling or a revelation (or even anywhere near as hilariously funny) as Bernadette's version was.

Registered User


Fav. BP Song: MoveOn
Fav. BP Show: Gypsy
Fav. BP Character: Bailey Lewis
Fav. BP CD: Sondheim, Etc Live At Carnegie Hall

posted: 8/18/2006 at 2:23:50 AM ET
View dulcinea4's profile  Get dulcinea4's email address  Send a Personal Message to dulcinea4  Edit/Delete this message  Reply with a quote  

I think Bernadette was able to do that with the role maybe in part because it so closely mirrored her own life that it just clicked. (thinks we may have discussed this previously)

Registered User

posted: 8/18/2006 at 5:29:44 PM ET
View PTM's profile  Send a Personal Message to PTM  Edit/Delete this message  Reply with a quote  

Karen - Glad you got to see a couple of the performances. I would love to have gone. Makes me sometimes wish that Broadway could be more like opera or ballet in the way that sets of stars can be featured in the same production during a season, but for upteen reasons, I'm sure that will never happen.

Anyway for those who would like to get of taste of LuPone's Rose, I found an audio clip below. I think she sounds a little flat, as in under the pitch, but maybe that's my ears or the recording??


Registered User

posted: 8/18/2006 at 7:04:42 PM ET
View Karen's profile  Send a Personal Message to Karen  See Karen's Photo Collection!  Edit/Delete this message  Reply with a quote  

Boy, that was even worse than I remembered. That must have been Friday night. The little yelp towards the end was very strange--we all commented on it. During that number she was frantically pacing around the stage in a circle. The next night she was a lot more controlled and focused and a little more on top of things vocally.

Registered User


posted: 8/19/2006 at 3:50:32 AM ET
View PATTY's profile  Get PATTY's email address  Send a Personal Message to PATTY  See PATTY's Photo Collection!  Edit/Delete this message  Reply with a quote  

Patti seems to "shout" the lyrics and therefore lacks the "feelings" Bernadette puts into Rose's Turn. Not convincing!

To the loveliest lady of song!
You will keep on giving me joy forever...

Registered User

posted: 8/30/2006 at 6:51:38 AM ET
View Buck's profile  Get Buck's email address  Edit/Delete this message  Reply with a quote  

Hi everyone. FYI, Patti received rave reviews across the board for her "Gypsy" at Ravinia: NY Times, Variety, Theatremania, Talkin' Broadway, Chicago Sun-Times, Chicago Tribune et al. "Google" and you'll find them but be warned! A couple of critics mention how miscast Bernadette was in the recent Broadway revival after seeing Patti. My opinion? Well, I think there's room for more than 1 interpretation of "Rose". So there!

Registered User


Edinburgh, Scotland
posted: 9/10/2006 at 2:35:06 PM ET
View Scottie's profile  Send a Personal Message to Scottie  See Scottie's Photo Collection!  Edit/Delete this message  Reply with a quote  

I don't often think to look at this part of the Bernadette board but just thought I would check in to see if anyone was mentioning the current rave London previews of "Wicked" with Idina Menzel ... and eh, no, they're not .... but in doing so I stumbled upon the Patti/GYPSY thread.

I had been wondering what Patti would be like in the role of Rose and read with great interest the thoughts on the Chicago performances and am very grateful to the person who put up the link for "Rose'sTurn" a la Patti.

I like Patti very much and thought she actually sounded fine but, My God!, her "Rose's Turn" was spinning around so fast that I felt positively giddy after the experience. I would imagine she felt the same way too! How could anyone possibly wring out any semblance of meaning from those great lyrics while singing/shouting them so quickly? Surely the Director of the piece is at fault? Goodness only knows what the rest of the evening was like.

I wasn't lucky enough to be able to witness the last Broadway production of GYPSY and have only ever seen a bootleg DVD of Bernadette in the role, but my goodness, she certainly took the time to sing/act and emote each and every word to it's ultimate dramatic and emotive effect ... maybe the brilliant Sam Mendez had some input there .... not to mention Bernadette's instinctive and rare gift for totally inhabiting the very soul of the character she is portraying. As for any critics still saying she was "miscast" ... well, quite frankly, who cares?

as Bernadette says....just keep moving on.....

Page 1 of 1 
Other threads: « Next | Previous »

Do you think this topic is inappropriate? Vote it down. After a thread receives a certain amount of negative votes it will be automatically locked.

Please contact us with any concerns you might have.
Site Design/Implementation copyright (©) 1999-2012 by Kevin Lux. Our privacy statement.
Please email with any news updates or pictures you may have.