By Merilyn Jackson For The Inquirer
After two years of touring, choreographer David Parsons’ Remember Me finally landed in Philadelphia Thursday night at Annenberg Center. A brilliant hit, it slams at the highbrow expectations of New York critics who’ve labeled it superficial and more soap than rock opera. Some say it’s a pop-opera; the Village Voice’s Deborah Jowitt called it a dansical.
None of this matters to audiences, which erupt in applause at the end of each act and bolt from their seats to cheer before the finale’s last notes fade. This is the kind of show that would have elicited flowers flung on the stage in another era.
What puzzles me is that Twyla Tharp gets nary a raised eyebrow for her Broadway excursions with Billy Joel and her Sinatra syndrome…, while Parsons has his feet held to the fire for collaborating with the East Village Opera Company (EVOC) to create an uber-sexy, easy-to-follow narrative as entertaining as any opera from a century ago – a gorgeously performed work for our time.
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