MY FAIR LADY tells the tale of cockney flower girl, Eliza Dolittle, being transformed into an early 19th century London lady. Dialect expert, Henry Higgins, is challenged to turn the lower-class girl into a society woman. The Guthrie Theater does a superb job of transporting the audience to London in 1912. Flowers and luminescent street lamps line the thrust stage. Higgins home has a spiral staircase which leads to his large two-story library. A pub, horse races and ballroom are portrayed with exemplary set pieces built in-house. There was not a false note: the costumes and set pieces were all period perfect. The audience’s boisterous clapping and laughing throughout the show was a clear indication that MY FAIR LADY has struck gold in Minneapolis.
Eliza played by Helen Anker, perfected the acting aspect of the cockney girl. Her use of accent was spot on. However, there was not a lot of oomph behind her high soprano notes, which in turn, lacked luster. Henry Higgins played by Jeff McCarthy had a stern, yet sharp sense of humor which was welcomed by the audience. Donald Corren who played Eliza’s dad, Alfred P. Doolittle, was a playful drunk who sang endearing tunes. Tyler Michaels played the young lover, Freddy. He was utterly charming and an audience favorite. The ensemble’s tight harmonies and polished dance numbers rounded out the show to make it one of the favorite musicals I’ve seen in a long time.
Although MY FAIR LADY took place over 100 years ago, it still is relevant to modern day. It’s easy to understand and a good show for all ages. The audience loved the music, in fact, a man in my row sang along the entire time. One thing is for certain, you are sure to leave humming. The musical runs now through August 31st. Get your tickets fast because this memorable production will sell out quickly! For more information: http://www.guthrietheater.org/
Rating: To Be