Falsettos

Falsettos, William Finn and James Lapine's landmark show about a married Jewish father circa 1979 who leaves his wife when he comes out of the closet, lost the Tony for Best Musical in 1992 to Crazy for You, a charming crowd-pleaser created out of old Gershwin tunes (Falsettos did, however, win for book and score). While there is currently on Broadway another charming crowd-pleaser that culls from the Gershwin songbook (Nice Work If You Can Get It), there is not now nor has there been since another musical that deals in one sung-through (i.e. no dialogue) swoop with gays, marriage, AIDS, what it means to be a family, and how a boy becomes a man. Pity, considering those subjects are as relevant as ever—and more reason to check out this week's concert staging by veteran director Victor Pappas. To give you an idea of its singularity, Falsettos begins with a song called "Four Jews in a Room Bitching" and ends with the question "How am I face tomorrow after being screwed out of today?" Marvin, the protagonist, is sometimes selfish in his quest to find satisfaction; his wife is understandably peeved by his attempts to welcome a lover into their clan; and his young son is prone to calling him a "homo." This is life in all its funny, tearful, and sometimes exhausting complexity. You'll come out of it humming and hopeful. STEVE WIECKING

Sat., Feb. 2, 8 p.m.; Sun., Feb. 3, 2 p.m., 2013

 
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