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Fan Reviews, Media Reviews, and comments from members of the Media, about Darren in Hedwig and the Angry Inch--SF and L.A. Tour

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Poppy

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Darren in Hedwig and the Angry Inch Tour--SF and L.A.

SF:  October 2-30, 2016  (SHN Golden Gate Theatre)

L.A.:  November 1-27, 2016 (Hollywood Pantages Theatre)


This thread is for any reviews of Darren in the SF and L.A. shows of the Hedwig and the Angry Inch tour.

Please feel free to post fan reviews and comments, as well as any media reviews and comments from members of the media, about Darren in Hedwig and the Angry Inch for the SF and L.A. venues of the tour,


To post in this thread ("Topic"), please select "Post Reply."

If you would like me to start a new thread (Topic) that is within the Category of Hedwig and the Angry Inch--SF and L.A. (Tour), please let me know. 

If you have any questions, please feel free to ask either here or you can PM me.   Don't be shy!

I am so looking forward to Darren performing in this wonderful musical again!

-



Last edited by Poppy on Mon Oct 03, 2016 12:07 pm; edited 1 time in total

Poppy

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                                                                 Hedwig and the Angry Inch Tour at SHN Golden Gate Theatre in San Francisco:   October 2 - 30, 2016.





From dailydarrennews:


@actualcatNikkiM Well… damn. @HedwigOnBway @shnsf @DarrenCriss #dressrehearsal #slayedit #waitedatthestagedoorlikeanerd


Note:  @actualcatNikkiM's Twitter page says she works in theater.


Hope we hear from others who were lucky enough to be there tonight!   I assume media do not go to dress rehearsals?



From @DarrenArmy:


Ha! 



Last edited by Poppy on Mon Jan 16, 2017 12:16 pm; edited 2 times in total

Poppy

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Posting a few reviews here to start off this thread.  :happy face


From dailydarrennews:


A tweet from a member of the media:




Anchor ABC7 News Bay Area
Source:  @reggieaqui





Love this portrait by Michael Arthur, who is a Brooklyn-based artist who specializes in drawing about theater, dance and music. 


michael arthur‏ Last week, I watched invited dress rehearsal of @HedwigOnBway tour with @DarrenCriss – San Francisco is in for a treat. #sketchbook
October 02 2016
dailydarrennews








photo
dailydarrennews
Source:  @MichaelMayerDIR and @stephentrask



Last edited by Poppy on Mon Jan 16, 2017 12:17 pm; edited 3 times in total

Poppy

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From dailydarrennews:

A nice pic at curtain call for the preview show on October 2. 


theshirin Darren Criss slaying as Hedwig. Will go see him again. Highly recommend.
October 02 2016











Poppy

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--

From @DarrenArmy:















This person tweeted several times (he didn't know who Darren was when he bought tickets):







And a few more tweets:












Lilikoiluv

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I hope you don't mind, Poppy, but DDN posted the full version of some of the October 4th tweets you posted above, so I'll repost them here: 









x
 

Adding sacteachv2's coments from Sunday's preview to this thread too: 
sacteachv2:
Loved everything about this first show! The SF references were great and the combo of Lena and Darren was amazing. It seemed like Darren hadn’t taken any time off- he was right back in the role without hesitation. He got some fun lines in - talked about Darren Criss, referenced Lea Michele and got a dig in about If/Then. So glad the “Chris Col-fur” line is gone. Some elements were a little different but they worked. Not used to major cheering after WLT curious to see if that changes. Both Michael and Darren confirmed that LA is it for Darren and Lena and there will be a new group for other cities. Pretty much knew that but hearing it directly was good. Stage door was interesting but Darren made sure to sign for everyone. Going back on Tuesday and can’t wait!
x
You can click the little 'x' link above to see the pretty photos she had posted with her thoughts!  :happy face



yanks02 on tumblr posted her impressions from last night's second preview.  She had mentioned that no one shouted descriptions for Hedwig's hair on Sunday, and so she had asked people for suggestions.  Here's what she said about last night: 
So Darren changed the “James Franco” line back to James Franco tonight. I guess “Darren Criss” was just a one off.


Also, the anon who sent me the message about how Lea Michele was brought up: It’s when Yitzhak is singing “When Love Explodes” and Hedwig says “I don’t know, I thought Lea Michele was better in the role” and then when Hedwig throws the sheet music into the audience she says “*Do* stop believing.” I couldn’t remember that on Sunday lol.


The crowd has continued to be weird, I don’t understand it? It’s pretty raucous and everyone cheers but like no one is shouting out hair suggestions when Hedwig asks for them (I yelled out “bananas” tonight so thanks for all the replies with random adjectives guys, I guess I’m going to have to memorize them and yell them out every night so Darren has something to work with) and tonight some guy literally just randomly yelled out “Show us your ass!” in a quiet moment, which Darren took and ran with about seeing her after the show and she’d try to “fit him in”. But still… don’t just yell out stuff, shit man.


I took my friend who only knew of “that guy from Glee” and after the show she could not stop smiling and thanked me over and over again for taking her because she said it changed her life. She’s already looking at buying more tickets and talking about how she’s going to download the album tonight. Bless, it’s so nice to watch someone’s life being changed because of Darren-as-Hedwig.


Okay off to bed. Full work day tomorrow and then Hedwig opening night! 

x
I'm glad that Darren is quick enough to choose when to play or not play with the yelling of inappropriate comments, but gosh.  wha? 


I loved that her friend was impressed with the show.  That is one of the best things I love about Darren doing Hedwig again. Like yank02's friend and the tweet from Thom (@knitmastergoat) Poppy posted above, I love seeing people that were not familiar with Darren prior to the show being overhwhelmingly surprised and impressed with his talent.  celebration dance! 

She's going yet again to tonight's opening! She's one lucky girl!


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Poppy

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@Lilikoiluv wrote:I hope you don't mind, Poppy, but DDN posted the full version of some of the October 4th tweets you posted above, so I'll repost them here:

Nope!  I don't mind at all.  :happy face  I appreciate your doing that, Lilikoiluv!

And thank you so much for posting sacteachv2''s comments and yanks02's comments!  I really enjoy reading the longer comments of people who are willing to write out their thoughts. 


@Lilikoiluv wrote:I'm glad that Darren is quick enough to choose when to play or not play with the yelling of inappropriate comments, but gosh.   

I loved that her friend was impressed with the show.  That is one of the best things I love about Darren doing Hedwig again. Like yank02's friend and the tweet from Thom (@knitmastergoat) Poppy posted above, I love seeing people that were not familiar with Darren prior to the show being overhwhelmingly surprised and impressed with his talent. 

Some people need to learn some more manners.  I mean, honestly.  It's just inappropriate behavior. 

Agree so much with you, Lilikoiluv about yanks02's friend really loving the show, and about people who are not that familiar with/do not necessarily consider themselves fans of, Darren, yet who turn out to be really touched by and impressed with Darren  after seeing the show. celebrate 


Yup, yanks02 is a lucky person!   I see her name around a lot.  She's a very supportive fan.


Thanks again for all your posts, Lilikoiluv!  I haven't worked my way through all of them yet, but I will!

Poppy

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From dailydarrennews:

I thought this comment was really interesting.  I'm not sure, but I don't think she was previously a fan of Darren.  She and her friend are artists.  Her comment was very perceptive, about not meeting many actors, and that she found it interesting to meet an actor who may inhabit different characters ("interesting to meet a person and see a mix of lives flicker back and forth in their eyes.  I don't meet many actors.  That must be necessary to be Hedwig & he was perfect.")


chachasikes At @kmimagine’s insistence we waited in a line to meet the cast of @hedwigonbway / and then how sweet that was because we were able to thank @darrencriss for his soulful and rockin performance as Hedwig. It’s was special and for many reasons & feels like the New Year began. Interesting to meet a person and see a mix of lives flicker back and forth in their eyes. I don’t meet many actors. That must be necessary to be Hedwig & he was perfect.  “try & tear me down”


Note:  Her friend who went with her to the show posted this comment on chachasikes's instagram:

kmimagine   "Admittedly jealous  of your moment.   But I think he knew you were someone special who appreciated the purity of his art form ; ) also what a gent saying hello to ALL of his fans."



Last edited by Poppy on Mon Jan 16, 2017 12:18 pm; edited 1 time in total

Lilikoiluv

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I think that's so interesting too.  Loved her friend's comment about Darren being a "gent" too! 

Here are a few opening night tweets that DDN captured: 
 






Darren's mom and dad are so sweet (via DDN):

Jim Levy: Michigan grads and me. Darren Criss gives an unbelievable performance in Hedwig at the Golden Gate - an extraordinary theatrical experience. Must see. And…he’s a really good guy. Thanks to his mom and dad for taking us back to see him after 
x

This person sounds like he was in the 'splash zone' last night. lol (via DDN): 

slairm #hedwigonbway was amazing!!!#hedwig #broadway #spitonme
x



Last edited by Lilikoiluv on Thu Oct 06, 2016 2:05 pm; edited 1 time in total


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Lilikoiluv

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DDN has posted a segment of a wonderful review/article from SFGate.  Here are the Darren-related parts, but the entire article is lovely with well-deserved high praise for many aspects of the production (I added on the end of the article because I thought that was lovely too)!

SHN’s ‘Hedwig’ either excellent or transcendent

Let’s be clear: Darren Criss is superb in the title role of SHN’s “Hedwig and the Angry Inch” at the Golden Gate Theatre.

Pumping out the show’s glam and punk rock anthems, he works his mic stand at times like it’s his own appendage, at others like it’s a sexual partner. His miniskirt highlights his every sinew — his leg muscles practically have their own leg muscles, and his bulging veins are visible from many rows back.

Yet his strength isn’t just physical. When the guitar in the four-person band that is the Angry Inch blasts out power chords at the command of his outstretched arm, it’s a product not just of bodily power but of messianic deviance and contagious rage.

Hedwig has a lot to be angry about: a bungled sex change operation that left her, en route from Hansel to Hedwig, with the “angry inch” of the show’s title; a brutal breakup with the soldier she had that operation for and moved from East Berlin to Kansas for; and a second, even more cruel breakup, this one with a teenage boy who steals her musical ideas, becomes famous and never credits or remembers her, even though she gave him his rock star name, Tommy Gnosis.

As Hedwig plays her show for us, Tommy’s AT&T Park concert (John Cameron Mitchell’s script allows room for many nods to the Bay Area) takes place simultaneously offstage. Each time an upstage door gets opened — usually by Yitzhak (Lena Hall), Hedwig’s slavish but vindictive sidekick — the lights and sound from Tommy’s much bigger show overwhelm Hedwig’s.

Save for a few well-timed outbursts, when Hedwig’s not singing, Criss keeps Hedwig’s jealousy, hurt and fury restrained, speaking in a menacing singsong that’s like the voice Robin Williams used to play Mrs. Doubtfire: a lilt ever threatening to drop into acerbic baritone.
.
.
.
For all her suffering, Hedwig also is a deity, and that’s what made the musical, which premiered Off-Broadway in 1998, so pioneering: It gives a gender-queer character not just flaws, not just agency, but superpowers in the all-American language of rock ’n roll. And in this production, those superpowers are wielded by not one, but two superheroes/heroines.
x
thumbs up clapping hands


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Poppy

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Thank you for posting that review, Joy.   applause   Nice review of Darren, Lena, and the production team.

Yes, Darren is superb! 

And this made me laugh:   "His leg muscles practically have their own leg muscles."  Razz



And thanks Lilikoiluv, for posting the fan reviews.  Glad to hear that Darren's parents were there on Opening Night to show their support.  Now, we know why Darren is so kind.  His parents are so thoughtful and caring. 

Referring back to one of my posts, about a comment from these two friend who saw Hedwig on Opening Night together.
@Poppy wrote:I thought this comment was really interesting.  I'm not sure, but I don't think she was previously a fan of Darren.  She and her friend are artists.  Her comment was very perceptive, about not meeting many actors, and that she found it interesting to meet an actor who may inhabit different characters ("interesting to meet a person and see a mix of lives flicker back and forth in their eyes.  I don't meet many actors.  That must be necessary to be Hedwig & he was perfect.")


Enlarge this image Click to see fullsize

chachasikes At @kmimagine’s insistence we waited in a line to meet the cast of @hedwigonbway / and then how sweet that was because we were able to thank @darrencriss for his soulful and rockin performance as Hedwig. It’s was special and for many reasons & feels like the New Year began. Interesting to meet a person and see a mix of lives flicker back and forth in their eyes. I don’t meet many actors. That must be necessary to be Hedwig & he was perfect.  “try & tear me down”


Note:  Her friend who went with her to the show posted this comment on chachasikes's instagram:

kmimagine   "Admittedly jealous  of your moment.   But I think he knew you were someone special who appreciated the purity of his art form ; ) also what a gent saying hello to ALL of his fans."





Dailydarrennews posted more comments from them.  I especially like that comment from chachasikes.


kmimagine  "They had a moment which I failed to capture but @darrencriss also thinks @chachasikes is awesome ; ) #hedwigandtheangryinch @shnsf"

chachasikes  "It really was special.  I feel like the ghosts of Hedwigs-past flow through me."






Joaquin tweeted.  Was he there?





From @DarrenArmy:









francofinn  What an unbelievable unique show, #hedwigandtheangryinch & amazing performance by @darrencriss  Takes a great actor/singer/performer to do what he does! Bay Area's own too...another amazing show @shnsf  Deserves 2x woop woop!  #shnsf #sanfrancisco #theater





From dailydarrennews:

rebekahdamaris  Last minute tickets = after party invites and @darrencriss Hedwig has fullfilled and surpassed my dreams. Always and forever love this show. #thankyou #hedwig #dream #goals #connection #ilostcoolpoints #shnsf #bae #theater #future




Last edited by Poppy on Mon Jan 16, 2017 12:19 pm; edited 1 time in total

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Another review by a news source of the Bay Area:  The Mercury News:  "Review: Bad-ass 'Hedwig' returns with a vengeance"
 
It's a mixed review.  The good:  She approves of Darren's "wisecracking bitchiness," his skill in "tart repartee," and finds Darren to be a "legit rock singer," with "white-hot vocals,"  and "endearing."

The bad: The critic seems to disapprove of Darren's interpretation of the character of Hedwig, wanting less "youthful exuberance," "muscular bravado," and "hopefulness,"  and more world-weariness.  Interestingly, she notes it is unfair to compete with memories of John Cameron Mitchell (the book is by John, which is loosely based on his life).  She also felt that Darren is "too baby-faced" (for this reason, I wonder if she would disapprove of Andrew, although she neglected to mention Andrew's name in the list of Broadway Hedwig actors).   
 
I think this sentence is in line with her perspective (which she of course is entitled to have; there is room for different perspectives):  "Some of the songs are less spiky this time around and more upbeat, which will rankle the devotees of yore . . . "


Her perspective reminds me of an insight of a long-time Hedwig fan. 
ablurredrainbowconnection wrote:
Anonymous asked: what are your fav things about all the actors that played hedwig on broadway and how they portrayed her?

well first off, I tend to use gender neutral terms for Hedwig, since their gender identity is never made clear . . . 


So I will start out by saying that it just isn’t ever going to get better then JCM. When you are so ingrained in writing/creating/portraying a character, the character becomes a part of you. Which is not to say the JCM is Hedwig, just that there are pieces of Hedwig that are JCM. So watching JCM do Hedwig is as close it gets to Hedwig being a real person, the person they were intended to be. IF that makes any sense.

In order to talk about the other actors it comes down to two camps(neither which i think is the right answer): did you try to do JCM’s Hedwig? or did you try to do your own version of Hedwig?

Both do and don’t work. For Instance I adore Micheal Cervisis’s Hedwig, definitely one of my favorites. But it is very much an homage to JCM’s. He didnt really put his own spin on it, but that was fine because he replicated it so well.

[. . . ]

The other option is to interpret Hedwig as your own, and not try to be JCM( which is probably the smarter choice). I would say MCH was the one actor who kind of straddled the line between these two schools of thought. While there were moments that felt new for him, a lot of it still felt like the JCM show . . .

Then there’s the final three [of those actors who tried to do a different version of Hedwig], who all made it there own to varying degrees of effectiveness.

[. . . ]

Despite what appears to be unpopular opinion, Darren has been one of my fave hedwigs, and not cause he’s Darren. His Hedwig felt both emotionally real, but not like a copycat. Not to mention his voice is best suited for the score. I’ve talked a lot about why I like Darren’s Hedwig, so I wont go completely into agian: but it basically boils down to the fact that his Hedwig is really devestating- and he doesn’t shy away from it. It’s a devastating show and to honor that is really important.

-ablurredrainbowconnection



Last edited by Poppy on Fri Oct 07, 2016 1:35 am; edited 2 times in total

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From dailydarrennews:


halfpintsimon: That one time we stood in line to talk to @darrencriss NMD. He was amazing playing the role of Hedwig @shnsf #SanFranciscoAF #hedwigandtheangryinch #shnsfhedwig







browerc82  Met the great #talent @darrencriss
 tonight at #hedwig in #sanfrancisco such an #awesome person!  Thanks for an amazing performance!  #hedwigshn #datenight







Last edited by Poppy on Mon Jan 16, 2017 12:20 pm; edited 1 time in total

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A tweet from Mark Hobin, who is part of the Online Film Critics Society and has his own site about film reviews:





A couple of fan comments (via dailydarrennews).  Music Addict took a couple of good pics.  :happy face






@MuSiCaDDiCt661
via dailydarrennews




via dailydarrennews





A few more comments, via @DarrenArmy:








Last edited by Poppy on Mon Jan 16, 2017 12:20 pm; edited 1 time in total

*Jeremy*

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It seems that Darren's performance gets a lot of positive reactions :happy face

Which doesn't surprise me at all :amused

Poppy

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Jeremy wrote:It seems that Darren's performance gets a lot of positive reactions

Which doesn't surprise me at all

That's so sweet of you to say that, Jeremy.  

Having seen Darren on Broadway in Hedwig and the Angry Inch, it's also no surprise to me that he's getting a lot of positive reactions.  It's so nice that West coast fans and people closer to the West coast (than the east coast) were given this opportunity to see him in this wonderful show.   It's also nice to see people who meet him remarking how nice he is to his fans, in terms of trying to get to everyone, and trying to connect with people at the stage door.

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Via DarrenCrissArmy


Repost # rixtraordinary  "Hey boy, take a walk on the wild side!" Darren Criss!! I absolutely loved his portrayal of Hedwig.  Can you say DREAM ROLE?!  #hedwigandtheangryinch #hedwigshn #darrenchriss #lenahall #goldengatetheatre #shn  http://ift.tt/2dLbV3y

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From dailydarrennews: 

A nice review. 

San Francisco Examiner wrote:
Criss, Hall light up 'Hedwig' tour in The City

The sometimes blinding light design by Kevin Adams matches the glee of Darren Criss' performance in the title role of the show's national tour, which recently opened at the Golden Gate Theatre.

[. . . ]

References to The City — from the theater impresario Nederlander family, to AT&T Park and the Tenderloin, to annoying Google buses — pepper the funny, dense dialogue, expertly delivered by Criss, who did the role on Broadway, following Neil Patrick Harris’ award-winning turn.

Criss dons Hedwig’s wild wigs, glittery togs and high heels (great costumer by Arianne Phillips) with confidence, and pulls off Trask’s varied score, from the loud crunchy tunes (“Tear Me Down”) to pop (“Wig in a Box”) and ballads (“Wicked Little Town”) wonderfully backed by the bona-fide rock band, The Angry Inch: Justin Craig, Matt Duncan, Tim Mislock, Peter Yanowitz.

-San Francisco Examiner
October 7, 2016


Poppy

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From dailydarrennews:

Kevin Sessums's comment is supportive of both Darren and Lena.  :happy face

Kevin Sessums is an American author and editor
October 07 2016
dailydarrennews



"But you are now great in this."

"He's become a remarkable Hedwig."



Such high praise!  I cannot wait to see Darren in L.A. to see how he has grown.  The last time I saw him in the show on Broadway, was three weeks into his run.  I can't wait to see how much he has grown into the role!

Note:  Kevin Sessums also has seen John Cameron Mitchell in the role of Hedwig.






From DarrenCrissArmy:


# Repost jan_jon

I was able to meet Darren Criss after his electrifying/stupendous/tear-invoking performance as Hedwig tonight. Not only did he hug me, ask my name, call me a beautiful man…he also FaceTime chatted with ahen86 and said her name too! I am too amazed from the show to exist. #darrencriss #northerncalifornia #norcal #sanfran #sanfrancisco #shn #goldengatetheatre #hedwig #hedwigandtheangryinch #darrencriss
 http://ift.tt/2ebUObT







From dailydarrennews:





 

Source
Amazing performance. And yes, that's Darren Criss from Glee.










Curtain Call - October 7, 2016   Source 
"When you sit in the 2nd row, you're bound to get spit & sweat on by Hedwig
Epic show!! Darren Criss & Lena Hall were simply amazing!!"



Curtain Call - October 7, 2016
zeniyma  "The back of yo head is ridiculous @darrencriss.   Amazing performance.  Amazing show.  Must see #SF!#hedwigonbway #darrencriss #broadway"









Last edited by Poppy on Mon Jan 16, 2017 12:21 pm; edited 1 time in total

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Some tweets about the October 7 show.

















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