If you have not seen the "Billy Elliot," winner of 10 Tony Awards including "Best Musical," I'm not sure what you are waiting for! Based on the international smash-hit film of the same name, "Billy Elliot" tells the tale of a boy who discovers his talent for dance that not only inspires his family and community, but changes his life forever!
From the moment the curtain rose, I was engulfed...in the story, the music, and most of all the choreography. This show is fantastic! Featured in this phenomenal cast are Will Chase as "Tony," Emily Skinner as "Mrs. Wilkinson," Gregory Jbara as "Dad," Carole Shelley as "Grandma," Laura Marie Duncan as "Mum," Alex Ko as "Billy" (the role of "Billy" alternates between Alex Ko, Jacob Clemente, Joseph Harrington, and Peter Mazurowski), Jake Evan Schwencke as "Michael" (the role of "Michael" alternates between Jake Evan Schwencke and Neil McCaffrey). The cast as a whole is terrific and seems to work really well together.
Alex and Jake's on-stage chemistry was great, making me feel as though they were really best friends (and who knows, maybe they are). Gregory, Will, Emily, Carole, and Laura, are perfectly cast in their roles and are all given a chance to shine. The real moments of the show come when "Billy" is dancing, for the audience is captivated even more so and many times moved to extra applause and cheers. At a mere 13 years old, Alex can dance! If he can do that at such a young age, I'm really looking forward to seeing where he goes from here. When Stephen Hanna as "Older Billy" and Alex dance together, the stage is really electrified for these two work hand in hand together!
My other favorite moments were during "Dear Billy" (both in Act I and Act II) and getting to hear Laura Marie Duncan's rich and beautiful voice as well as during "Shine" and "Born to Boogie" when Emily Skinner gets to dazzle the audience with her big powerful vocals she's so well known for.
For me personally, the greatest moment was getting to see Will Chase, Emily Skinner, Laura Marie Duncan, and Jimmy Smagula back on stage together in the same show. I saw them all in "The Full Monty" in 2001 and I've been a fan of theirs ever since! All four of them are just so talented both vocally and acting wise, that audiences are just so lucky to get to see them in "Billy Elliot."
So if you're looking for a Broadway show to make you inspired and feel good, then I highly suggest dancing your way to "Billy Elliot" at The Imperial Theatre in New York City (249 West 45th Street). Click here for tickets!