‘The Devil Wears Prada’ Review: Fashion and Theater Mistakes

Currently having a world premiere before its 2023 Broadway opening, ‘The Devil Wears Prada, the Musical’ runs the gamut from mildly distracting to deeply disappointing, with the latter being its hallmark. spirit.

Running through August 21st at the Nederlander Theatre, this world of high fashion was scored by Elton John and it deserves it. For now, this behind-the-scenes tale set in one of the world’s leading fashion magazines is closer to his J.C. Penney clearance his catalog than couture.

“The Devil Wears Prada, the Musical” (written by Kate Wetherhead, lyrics by Shaina Taub) is rooted in a romanized phrase Lauren Weisberger wrote in 2003 about working for a major fashion magazine. Anna Wintour, the magazine’s notoriously strict editor-in-chief;

Musical “The Devil Wears Prada”

The novel’s dirty scenes of wealth and overwork spawned the famous 2006 film version, starring Meryl Streep as Runway magazine editor-in-chief Miranda Priestly and Anne Hathaway as Andy Sacks. Pay rent until she can write about social justice issues and change the world.

One of the big problems with director Anna D. Shapiro’s musical Prada is that Tony Award winner Beth Rebel will play Miranda and Taylor Iman Jones will play Andy, but the fashion sense is overwhelming. is lacking. Frankly, we’ve seen more creative silhouettes in any season of ‘RuPaul’s Drag His Race’. Costumes His designer Arianne Phillips often tries to make glowing graphic prints or oversized graphics his prints in exchange for designs that don’t impress, but you need more than just a superficial flash. From the ill-tailored red dress Miranda wears to the office, to the bulbous-armless, Michelin-man-worthy piece that claims to be cutting-edge Parisian runway couture, every look is under-budget and under-finished. It looks inadequate.

You don’t even get the feel of a runway magazine. We’ve been told time and time again about the legends and icons that have walked the halls of magazines in reverent tones. There is no sense of history.The office aesthetic is basic and mundane, fashion akin to arts and crafts projects with little actual art.

The Devil Wears Prada starring Taylor Iman Jones (left to right), Javier Muñoz and Beth Liber

Taylor Iman Jones (left to right), Javier Muñoz and Beth Liebel star in The Devil Wears Prada.

To make matters worse, the musical “The Devil Wears Prada” feels like it was written by committee, and some tackle Gen Z issues (a drinking song about “a job that pays rent” and There are meaningless jingles about how to live in your 20s). Some deal with fashion and tackle the plight of pioneering women in the workplace. None are addressed with any particular intensity or ingenuity.

Then there’s music.

One of the best of the harrowing songs is a number like Miranda’s sung monologue, based on the film’s iconic speech, which uses a cerulean blue belt to represent the fashion industry’s global social and Describes the economic scope. In Miranda’s succinct account of fashion’s inevitable impact around the world, Leavell provides Ice Age-worthy shade and freezes Andy’s cynicism into silence. Much of it is spoken rather than sung, but it’s the high point of the score, otherwise as flat as a freshly ironed hem.

The title track is Head Scratcher. That pulsing claim that Priestley is actually a designer demon pretty much undermines all the work Leavell has done to show Miranda as more than a one-dimensional, narcissistic elitist. Elton John wrote great scores on ‘Billy Elliott’ and ‘Aida’. Here, his music does not advance the story or deepen the character. Worse, it doesn’t offer him a single memorable star turn for Reid.

Jones and Leavell’s decent performances are underpinned by a supporting cast that draws from the film and the book. Runway art director Nigel (Javier Muñoz) is the quintessential brash best friend, ranging from his distaste for synthetics to the predictable numbers about growing up gay in a homophobic small town. Miranda’s first assistant, Emily (Megan Masako Haley), is all very ambitious. Andy’s friends and roommates help bring up a brief plot, mostly about housing insecurities. This issue will be resolved as soon as it is spoken.

Under Shapiro’s direction, The Devil Wears Prada the Musical seeks to emulate the film’s lightly comical, somewhat acrimonious quest for an industry that’s all glamor and wealth on the outside and more troublesome on the inside. She only succeeds in making faint copies of copies.

In its current state, The Devil Wears Prada from the Musical is a crude knockoff, a cheap flea market bag with a designer label on the lining. Back to the sketchbook!

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