I happen to be a big fan of Douglas Carter Beane, and Xanadu is on my top 20 lists of favorite campy movie musicals into Broadway musicals. Beane is a very talented writer. I also loved his play The Little Dog Laughed, which ran on Broadway. I loved it so much I went several times.
Beane grew up in Reading, PA and at a young age of 14, got involved in community theater. This experience changed his life. He realized he was gay; he found out his passion for acting and writing. This experience brought him to the next phase in his life.
Patti LuPone plays Irene, the leader of the theater, and her performance as a difficult, theater diva is nothing short of perfection. It was as if the role was written for her. Michael Urie is also a gifted actor and plays a 14-year-old Beane with passion and a sweetness that comes from within. You can’t help but fall in love with his character and want him to succeed.
The show is narrated by Urie, telling the audience about his life and his lust for a cute actor at the theater. The actor did not love Beane but opened his eyes to being gay and his first experience at making love. Urie plays a very youthful and naive boy, and his performance is earth shattering and believable.
The show is entertaining but needs some more cutting and fine-tuning. See it, if you love LuPone and Michael Urie.
If you see the show, take your battery out of your cell phone before you enter. The week before I attended a rude audience member was texting in the first few rows. LuPone was distracted by the glare and grabbed the phone. I took my battery out before entering, and I agree it is rude to use your cell during the performance. Sit back, relax and enjoy the dysfunction.