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"Pippin"at the Fifth

"Pippin"at the Fifth

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I went to see the 5th Avenue Theater's production of "Pippin" last night.

Pretty good production, wonderful minimalist sets and the typical great 5th Avenue talent (Keith Byron Kirk as the Leading Player was especially good).

Pippin's an adult show, with adult themes (though not as adult as Hair), I wouldn't take small kids to it, but I loved it (Pippin's one of my all time favorite shows, I saw it in 1970's at Proctor's Theater in Schenectady with Ben Vereen and William Katt (the same cast as is on the video)).

I utterly loved "War is a Science", the image of generals dancing in office chairs was utterly perfect (including Condoleeza Rice).

 

In this production, they made one change to the ending that totally blew me away.

SPOILER WARNING (for a 30 year old show):

Normally at the end of Pippin, Catherine turns to Pippin and asks "How do you feel?", and Pippin responds "Trapped but happy".

In this production, Theo (Catherine's son) walks to the center of the empty stage and starts singing a reprise of "Corner of the Sky".  Upon hearing this, the Leading Player and the rest of the cast come out and surround Theo singing a chorus of "Magic to do".

 

I was astounded.  This one change to the ending totally changed the flavor of the show making it significantly darker - in the original ending, you feel like Pippin has compromised his belief in being extraordinary for a simpler life, but with the new ending, the Players lie in wait to undermine wheoever feels their life should be extraordinary.

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