Review: Tootsie on Broadway
Tootsie is the 1982 hit movie starring Dustin Hoffman. It follows an arrogant out of his luck actor, Michael, who dresses up as a woman to land a gig. He gets it, along with so much more. Dorothy, Michael’s alter ego, becomes an overnight sensation for her sassy role on a soap opera and becomes a series regular. There Dorothy creates a bond with costar Julie (played by Jessica Lange, who won an Oscar for the role) and Michael/Dorothy ends up falling for her. Of course, calamity ensues. The film went on to be nominated for ten Academy Awards and the film is preserved by the Library of Congress in the National Film Registry. Now, in 2019, Tootsie is a Tony Award-winning Broadway hit musical!
The musical’s concept is relatively the same minus the year and the switch that instead of Michael/Dorothy landing a role in a soap opera, he now has a role in a Broadway show called Juliet’s Curse, a sequel to Romeo and Juliet where Juliet wakes up and falls for Romeo’s brother. It works. It works so well, book writer Robert Horn snagged a Tony for it this month. It provides more to the storyline and so many A+ smart zingers. Yes, our face still hurts from smiling and laughing. Putting up a musical described as a comedy about a man dressing up as a woman in 2019 is a very difficult thing with gender being discussed so openly and passionately. This team clearly thought long and hard about it, some lines feeling a bit forced. Hopefully, it starts a conversation. Julie now wants to be in a relationship with Dorothy, a very welcome twist. And most importantly, Dorothy Michaels is a feminist icon, y’all!
Tony Award winner, Santino Fontana plays Michael/Dorothy, who audiences know from the TV series Crazy Ex-Girlfriend or the voice of Prince Hans in Disney’s Frozen. (You have totally sung along with him in “Love is an Open Door”). Fontana won a Tony Award for his portrayal mere weeks ago and it is certainly well deserved. What a megastar! He plays both Michael and Dorothy with such a niche, you are rooting for and fall in love with both characters. In a word, Fontana is perfection. His now strong-willed modern woman Julie, is played by the charming Lilli Cooper who received a Tony nomination for her portrayal. Cooper’s voice is a dazzling highlight of the show! Rounding out the cast are the hysterical scene-stealing Sarah Stiles as Sandy Lester, Andy Grotelueschen as Jeff and John Behlmann as Max. Stiles and Behlmann both received Tony nominations for their roles, enough said. The cast is an absolute dream. When the curtain closed, we genuinely wanted more.
Tootsie won’t let you down! Make it the most important night and get your tickets HERE!