Being a huge fan of Spring Awakening, largely due to the music by Duncan Sheik, I was eager to see American Psycho, the new Broadway musical that he also did the music for. The show, which is based upon the novel by Bret Easton Ellis, was definitely a unique theatergoing experience. Read on for my thoughts.
American Psycho Broadway Offers Unique Theater Experience
When the show began, with a screen showing the main character Patrick Bateman killing someone, I knew I was in for something unique. Since the show was so a-tradiitonal, my review below is also of that nature- I have listed things I loved about the show and things I was not the biggest fan of.
The incorporation of the overindulgent 1980’s, which is the setting and backdrop to the show, was brilliant. One of the most stunning moments in the show was when the cast sang a very eerie version of Phil Collins‘s In The Air Tonight. It very well may have been the most beautiful version I’ve ever heard.
The acting was exceptional, with each person making their character extremely believable.
There were some great musical numbers such as the catchy opener “Selling Out” and the beautiful act two song “Nice Thought.”
The staging was brilliant, with detailed sets and great lighting/visuals.
The show was one of the most unique things I’ve seen on a stage ever.
There were not enough memorable musical numbers, and I found the majority of the songs to not be necessary to tell the story.
In the same vein, I found myself disappointed by how many of Spring Awakening‘s songs I still cherish to this day and how few of American Psycho‘s I enjoyed.
The story is engaging, but I felt that it being a musical actually took away from the experience rather than drawing the viewer more in. Had this been a play, it would have been one of my favorite things of the season; however, as a musical, I just felt there were too many moments where I felt it wasn’t working.
Due likely to the show being a musical, I also found the length too long, and felt there were definite moments that could have been cut.
To wrap up, I applaud American Psycho for being unique and setting itself apart from the “normal” Broadway experience. With that said, though, I still feel this would have been better as a play, rather than a musical due to the lack of memorable musical numbers.
Overall, it still is worth checking out, if only for the alternative theater experience.