Following numerous delays, this revival of the musical starring Hugh Jackman and Sutton Foster has now officially opened on Broadway – but what have critics had to say about it?

Photograph: Joan Marcus/AP

The Guardian: *** “It’s tempting to say that for the rest of this production director Jerry Zaks can’t match the star power at its center, but that’s not quite it – not exactly. Sutton Foster plays the buttoned-up librarian Marion, who is immediately suspicious of Hill but starts to see the good in him even before he does, and she emerges as a formidable match for her co-star.”

Variety: “Hugh Jackman dazzles as Professor Harold Hill, the charismatic con man who fires up an entire Midwestern town, in this abso-tootin’-lutely smashing revival of Meredith Willson’s adorably corny 1957 musical “The Music Man.” “ “Warren Carlyle’s energetic, song-and-dance choreography blends vaudeville panache, ballet and pre-Depression dance craze, hitting all the right spots at all the right angles.” “Certainly it feels like a glitzy, age-of-musicals move to cast Sutton Foster and Hugh Jackman; it’s increasingly rare to see a pair of stage stars of this megawattage sing and dance together. Their celebrity and undeniable presence seem to have overcome any little concerns about fissures between the performers and their characters — there are places where Foster’s mezzo strains in the high stuff and Jackman goes sour. But director Jerry Zaks solves that by bringing ’em front and center, to stand (or dance) on the stage lip and radiate Golden Age glamour.”

Hollywood Reporter: “Not that the production ever seems to coast on its pedigree. Reuniting after Dolly are director Jerry Zaks, choreographer Warren Carlyle and scenic and costume designer Santo Loquasto, who have done their damnedest to recreate vintage Broadway style. The show features a huge ensemble, who break into elaborate production numbers with the regularity of buses leaving Port Authority. And though the sets, featuring a large red wood wall and many painted backdrops, aren’t particularly lavish, they perfectly evoke the spirit of the summer stock theaters in which many people were probably exposed to The Music Man in the first place.”

The Wrap: “While this glossy but uneven revival of the 1957 classic, which opened Thursday night at Broadway’s Winter Garden Theatre, is clearly intended as a star vehicle for the Tony-winning showman, Jackman consistently cedes the spotlight to allow the ensemble to shine. And shine they (mostly) do, particularly in group numbers like “76 Trombones” and “Marian the Librarian” that showcase Warren Carlyle’s often athletic choreography.”

NY Post: ** “He and Foster dance Warren Carlyle’s choreography better than any previous pair of actors could’ve. The movement is easy on the eyes (even if Santo Loquasto’s flat, lusterless set is not) but light on storytelling. When Hill arrives, his insurgent energy sparks a fire in River City’s youth and you’d hope to feel their rebellion in the dancing. A lot of it, though, is cute and wiggly.”

Slant Magazine: “The Music Man has long had the misfortune of being both overexposed and underappreciated, a mainstay of school and amateur productions that doesn’t consistently let audiences in on the sophistication and emotional honesty of Meredith Willson’s score and storytelling. (Hearing that score played by a 24-piece orchestra at the Winter Garden Theatre under the baton of Patrick Vaccariello is especially gratifying here.) But there’s nothing simplistic about The Music Man, and this slightly zany production, deeply felt and deeply funny, sells the show’s intelligent warmth with a persuasiveness to rival Harold Hill himself.”

Time Out: *** “The Music Man‘s story of duplicity and redemption could have deeper resonance today than ever, but this incarnation sticks resolutely to the surface.”

WhatsOnStage: *** “And there are one or two genuine moments of real Broadway magic scattered throughout. Carlyle creates an entire imaginary marching band out of the townspeople in “76 Trombones,” a terrific number I’d be happy to watch repeatedly. When that Wells Fargo Wagon rolls on stage with Jackman astride, tossing packages and musical instruments to the crowd, it made my heart leap out of my chest in the way that only a musical can.”

The Independent: “Hugh Jackman is playing one of musical theater’s greatest con men on Broadway these days but he’s not fooling anyone: He’s the real deal.”

The Stage: *** “Hugh Jackman and Sutton Foster don’t quite gel in a restrained revival with moments of exuberant dance.”

The Telegraph: **** “The stage-and-screen megastar is dazzling in this restaging of Meredith Willson’s bouncy 1957 musical at the Winter Garden Theatre, Broadway.”

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