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A lackluster show not fit for Broadway

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“The Little Prince,” based mostly on the previous French novel, owes New York audiences a pleading désolé. Or, maybe, NYC ought to apologize for reserving it.

The woeful touring dance present, which opened Monday night time on the Broadway Theatre, doesn’t belong in any respect the place it’s at present located. That’s on Broadway, the head of American musical theater, and 13 blocks away from the New York Metropolis Ballet, one of many world’s main dance firms. 


Theater assessment

1 hour and 50 minutes with one intermission. On the Broadway Theatre, 1681 Broadway at 53rd Avenue.

In music, dance, design and storytelling, “Little” comes up quick. 

The set, corresponding to it’s, is comprised of lazy, textureless projections that recall to mind the 1993 online game “Myst” and the planetary opening sequence of “third Rock From the Solar.” When paired with the trippy pre-recorded music (there isn’t any stay orchestra), we could possibly be watching a brand new age cult’s introductory videotape.

That mentioned, nothing over the almost two hours is as compelling as your common brainwashing cult chief. 

Antoine de Saint-Exupéry’s 1943 e book is a couple of pilot (Aurélien Bednarek) who crash-lands within the Sahara desert and meets a boy referred to as the little prince, who regales him with tales of his galactic adventures. He’s performed by Lionel Zalachas, who rolls in balancing on an train ball.

The Little Prince takes the stage rolling on a ball.
The Little Prince (Lionel Zalachas) takes the stage rolling on an train ball.
Joan Marcus

First the pair draw sheep, that are embodied by actors within the type of low-cost fluffy costumes that you just’d discover in low-budget kids’s theater.

Actress and co-director (together with Anne Tournié) Chris Mouron narrates each character’s dialogue — typically in touch-and-go songs — in a wispy, “come hither” voice that by no means wavers irrespective of the scene. Whether or not it’s a humorous quantity, a melancholic second or a dance in regards to the perils of alcoholism — an enormous wine bottle is clumsily raised up and down on a wire — all are equivalent in tone. Monotonous.     

There are gifted dancers within the 16-person solid, which hails from France, however essentially the most spectacular items — that includes aerial work — get shrugs from NYC theatergoers who’re accustomed to common visits from Cirque du Soleil. You’ll discover extra spectacular acts at golf equipment like downtown’s Home of X, the place spinning girls are suspended from the ceiling by their hair. 

The Little Prince tells stories about his adventures on different planets.
The Little Prince tells tales about his adventures on completely different planets.
Joan Marcus

Nothing in “The Little Prince” wakes you up a lot as these flying follicles, and all of it’s swallowed up by one of many theater district’s largest homes at 1,761 seats. 

Neither is the e book’s which means or profundity correctly explored. We go away not figuring out how you can really feel about “The Little Prince,” apart from that it’s French and vaguely whimsical; its messages and life classes wiped away by a manufacturing extra content material with being wannabe ASMR than an embraceable story. To see the e book’s potential, try the far better animated film that was launched in 2016.  

The dearth of an exhilarating journey, the middling spectacle, canned songs and a corny CGI panorama make for a “Prince” that’s a lot too petit for Broadway.