Tonight I saw Hair in Central Park. It made me cry. It is not the first time I have cried during a show. It's happened plenty of times. This is the first time the shear force of the crescendoing music reached into my chest and shook the emotion out of me until I burst into tears. It's a very visceral production. I thought it was amazing.
Hair is not a musical I really know a lot about. I find hippies a little puzzling. My time at Wesleyan did nothing to clear it up for me. I had seen Hair once before in community theater and that production was... not good. The problem was the storytelling. Hair is not an easy musical to produce, it's easy to get lost in it's unconventional nature.
This production handles the storytelling so well. Act 1 flies along with great energy and fun powerhouse performances. Act 2 is a weird trip, but you can still tell what's going, which is wonderful.
It's hard for me to watch the show without a bittersweet feeling in my heart. I mean, you know it's not going to end well. The hippies don't win. It's a celebration of the culture and an examination of the conflict of the time. There are certainly parallels to be drawn today. This is a vital production. I really loved it. Even if it made me sad and I cried. If you want to see it, but frankly don't have time to stand on line from 6am-1pm in the hopes to get a ticket. My advice would be to line up for tickets on the cancellation line between 5-6pm. I don't know why they release well over a hundred tickets. I was #115 on the line and i was far from the last ticket handed out. But they do. So that way you can only wait for 2.5 hours before the show insteand of 7 or 8 hours in the morning. This show is worth sitting in line in the park on a nice summer day for a few hours. Be there!