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National touring production of “Jekyll & Hyde” visits Oklahoma City
Wicks has the unenviable task of playing Jekyll's fiancee Emma Carew, a role the authors didn't flesh out with the same expertise they did with the musical's title characters. But Wicks delivers the lovely ballad “Once Upon a Dream” with skill, in spite of an odd orchestration.
As the singer at a seedy club called “The Spider's Web,” Cox's Lucy Harris offers a nice blend of seduction and fearful desperation, the latter evident in her encounters with Hyde. In the aptly titled “Dangerous Game,” Cox and Maroulis perform a number that is both sexually charged and perilous.
“In His Eyes,” a power ballad in which Wicks and Cox dream wistfully about their characters' relationships with Jekyll and Hyde respectively, is a lovely duet that they unfortunately try to oversell. And while Cox can't compete vocally with Broadway's original Lucy (Linda Eder), she reminds us that Wildhorn's “Someone Like You” deserves its distinction as a classic anthem.
Richard White makes the most of his limited stage time as Emma's father Sir Danvers Carew, with David Benoit, Laird Mackintosh, Jason Wooten, Brian Gallagher, Aaron Ramey, Blair Ross and Mel Johnson, Jr. handling the production's secondary roles with confidence.
Tobin Ost's attractive set design conveys both the mysterious and gloomy laboratory in which Jekyll conducts his experiments, and the London underworld that is home to “The Spider's Web.” For those who may be unfamiliar with the story, particularly its frequent flirtations with murder and the musical's surprising ending, I'll not offer a spoiler alert.
Suffice it to say that “Jekyll & Hyde” is destined to remain a flawed musical that its huge fan base known as Jekkies happily choose to disregard. But when a musical can deliver no less than a quartet of musical hits (“This Is the Moment,” “Someone Like You,” “Once Upon a Dream” and “A New Life”), and, in the case of this production, a stellar talent such as Constantine Maroulis, one would be foolhardy to dismiss it entirely. It's a position that so many other troubled musicals would happily envy.
— Rick Rogers