Stage Review

THE LOOK OF LOVE (2003 - 2003)

EW's GRADE
C-

Details Opening Date: May 04, 2003; Lead Performances: Farah Alvin and Liz Callaway; Director: Scott Ellis

If about a dozen full-throated singers belting out the exquisitely crafted hits of Burt Bacharach and Hal David sounds familiar, it should: An episode of American Idol did it last year. This new production, a nonstop string of cover versions coyly choreographed by Ann Reinking, is little more than an elaborate variation on the Idol show. The most timeless Bacharach-David songs -- ''Walk on By,'' ''Close to You,'' and the title tune, among the many resurrected here -- were neither campy nor arty. Yet too much of Love vacillates between those extremes: cutesy sequences with hammy body language on one hand, ersatz Fosse-dominatrix kitsch on the other. The show works best at its simplest, as when Liz Callaway, alone on stage, brings out the forlorn beauty in ''I Just Don't Know What to Do With Myself.'' But overall, the show looks less like love and more like contrivance.

Originally posted May 23, 2003 Published in issue #711 May 23, 2003 Order article reprints
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