The Verdict: Critics Review Re-Imagined Side Show at La Jolla Playhouse

By .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)
19 Nov 2013

Emily Padgett and Erin Davie
Emily Padgett and Erin Davie
Photo by Rebecca Joelson

Side Show, the Tony Award-nominated Henry Krieger-Bill Russell musical about real-life conjoined twins Daisy and Violet Hilton, has returned to the stage in a new incarnation directed by Academy Award winner Bill Condon. The production officially opened Nov. 10 after previews that began Nov. 5 at the La Jolla Playhouse.

Condon ("Dreamgirls") has given new dramatic shape to the pop-driven musical that has a score by Krieger (Dreamgirls) and Russell (Elegies for Angels...), who also wrote the book. This new, darker approach to the material, which incorporates new songs as well as additional biographical details of the Hilton twins' life and historical figures of the era, will continue through Dec. 15 in La Jolla.

Following the West Coast premiere, Side Show will play a June 14-July 13, 2014, run at the Kennedy Center.

A source close to the production told Playbill.com that the creative team is hopeful for a Broadway run. The musical has gained a large cult following since its brief Broadway run in 1997.

Erin Davie (Grey Gardens, A Little Night Music) and Emily Padgett (Rock of Ages, Flashdance) co-star as Violet and Daisy, respectively, in a cast that also features Manoel Felciano (Sweeney Todd, Cabaret) as Terry Connor, Matthew Hydzik (West Side Story, Grease) as Buddy and David St. Louis (Jesus Christ Superstar, The Scarlet Pimpernel) as Jake.

Read more about Playbill.com's coverage here.

The critics have filed their reviews, and Playbill.com has collected them for our readers. Playbill.com will continue to update our list as the reviews come in.

Los Angeles Times

U-T San Diego

Variety