The Scottsboro Boys, currently playing through the end of June 2013 at the Ahmanson Theater, is a show that is not to be missed. From the moment the house lights go down, the audience is enchanted by the remarkable cast, lighting, and incredible music of Kander and Ebb (Cabaret, Chicago).
Without a doubt, this show is one of the best I’ve seen. The cast is overflowing with talent, with every member standing out. To not mention the breathtaking mastery of Joshua Henry would be a crime. His presence is on stage for a majority of the two-hour (no intermission) performance, and there is not a moment where he isn’t at the top of his game. Deandre Sevon, the youngest member, is reminiscent of a young Michael Jackson, and is awe-inspiring during the “Electric Chair” number with his tap skills and soprano voice.
With such a strong storyline, the choice to have modest sets and costumes was a brilliant option, as the audience can focus on the unbridled talent and truth of the history of the 9 young boys. The acting, in addition to singing and dancing, still kept the “theater” feeling that seems to go missing from so many other shows, another credit to Ebb’s unmatched writing. At times, however, I felt guilty for enjoying it so much. The music, naturally, is gifted and the story so captivating, it seemed disturbing at times for being swept up in the magic. If you are unfamiliar with the story, you can read about it on wikipedia here or watch a video from Emory University here.
The Scottsboro Boys is a mesmerizing, emotional and inspirational show that is, without a doubt, the one show you should see before it closes its doors June 30th.