Returning to Broadway for the first time since his 2010 concert special, Harry Connick, Jr. stars in the current revival of “On a Clear Day You Can See Forever.” The re-imagined musical, directed by Michael Mayer, opened at St. James Theatre last night, December 11.
As the title suggests, the revised book by Peter Parnell is based on the 1965 original by Alan Jay Lerner. The tuner also makes use of Lerner’s lyrics and original music by Burton Lane, with additions and alterations to suit Parnell’s creative tinkering.
That tinkering adds a new twist to this paranormal love story, which features Connick as psychiatrist Dr. Mark Bruckner. During the course of hypnotic treatment, the doctor uncovers (and falls in love with) his patient’s past life as a jazz singer, resulting in a sort of psychological love triangle.
But while Lerner’s original script called for one leading lady to play both patient and chanteuse, here the lead is split in two. Actress Jessie Mueller plays the past-life alter ego, Melinda, while actor David Turner takes on the gender-revised role of the patient, rewritten as David Gamble, a gay man with commitment issues.
“On a Clear Day” entered previews November 12. Audiences at the 1,367-seat St. James have averaged 84 percent capacity over the course of four box office reporting weeks, through December 4. During that same time frame, the production has grossed nearly $2.4 million out of a $4 million potential, according to the Broadway League.
Ticket prices for regular seats run $35 to $157. Premium ticket options also are available for face values between $157 and $302, depending on the performance time and seat location.
“On a Clear Day” runs approximately two-and-a-half hours, including one 15-minute intermission. Performances are staged at 8 p.m. on evenings Wednesday through Saturday and at 7 p.m. on Sunday. Matinees begin at 2 p.m. on Wednesday, Saturday and Sunday.
St. James Theatre is located at 246 West 44th Street in New York, NY. “On a Clear Day” is scheduled into an open-ended run. More details are available on the production’s official Web site.
Opening Night: “On a Clear Day You Can See Forever”
|New York Times||Ben Brantley||“[Connick] makes even an up number like the title song sound like an exquisitely sung dirge. “|
|USA Today||Elysa Gardner||“The new ‘On a Clear Day’ might be an overambitious mess were it not for the winning performances and luscious music.”|
|TheaterMania||David Finkle||“Connick, an instinctive stage performer, brings humor and depth to the likable yet troubled Bruckner.”|
|Hollywood Reporter||David Rooney||“All three leads are appealing and handle the wonderful songs with ease. But they somehow never knit together into an engaging trio.”|
|New York Post||Elisabeth Vincentelli||“Connick has such a naturally gorgeous tone that he pulls off ballads almost despite himself.”|
|Chicago Tribune||Chris Jones||“…a troubled and perplexing show…”|