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PostPosted: Wed Feb 13, 2019 2:19 am 
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Oh, maybe Disney wants their own version of Anastasia, but I just feel like Disney's got the best one by owning Fox's so they should be happy enough!

Omg that comment you posted is hilarious!

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PostPosted: Fri Feb 15, 2019 4:15 am 
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Disney Duster wrote:
Oh, maybe Disney wants their own version of Anastasia, but I just feel like Disney's got the best one by owning Fox's so they should be happy enough!

Omg that comment you posted is hilarious!

Sorry, I wasn't clear with my earlier comment. I didn't mean that Disney wants to create a new animated movie on Anastasia. What I meant was that maybe they want to create their own Broadway version of Anastasia, one closer to the original movie and Disney brand rather than the historical drama it is. This is just a theory though and there's no evidence that Anastasia is closing because of the Disney deal anyway.

Lol, yeah I'm glad you appreciated it!

I got the chance to watch the musical this week so I'll be sure to post my thoughts on it sometime soon.


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 15, 2019 6:52 am 
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Oh, I see. Thanks for the clarification. Can't wait to hear your thoughts on the show, so glad you saw it!

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PostPosted: Sat Feb 16, 2019 7:54 pm 
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Thanks Disney Duster!

The show I watched was the one with the National Tour cast so I unfortunately didn't get the chance to see Christy Altomare, but the lead actress who played Anya here was just as talented! Her voice was incredible and was so easily able to project that I never felt the loss of Christy. Everyone in the audience absolutely loved her. I felt Dimitri was a bit weaker. He didn't really resemble the character the way that the Broadway actors have all so far managed to look like the animated character. His voice was good but I felt when placed next to Anya's voice, it just couldn't compete. The chemistry that Christy and Derek Klena had, for example, wasn't matched with this performance. I will say though that while I appreciate that Anya and Dimitri are still connected in the musical, I much prefer how they originally met in the first film with Dimitri being instrumental in saving her life and having possession of the music box. As for Gleb, he was a really good actor but I felt his singing was a bit forced. He seemed like he was struggling with some of the notes and the endings of songs.

Vlad and Lily were easily the most loved part of the show. They got the most applause during "The Countess and the Common Man" and people were hysterical over their scenes together! As much as I miss Sophie from the animated film, I have to say that they couldn't come up with a better replacement than Lily. It's too bad that she can't be a part of "Paris Holds the Key" like in the movie though. I noticed though that all the references to the famous historical figures have been removed in this sequence. I've seen the pre-Broadway show on Youtube, where they made a big spectacle out of seeing people like Gertrude Stein so I wish they kept those elements, even if most kids wouldn't catch the references.

For some reason, "Crossing a Bridge" was missing from my performance. I don't know if it has been removed from the National Tour performances or if even the Broadway show has chucked the song out, but I was sorta looking forward to that song. I understand the reasoning, since the song isn't really necessary, but I do overall enjoy it. Journey to the Past was phenomenal to see live and I just wish I had a remote so I could rewind that scene. Once Upon a December was fine, but I haven't been a fan of the musical's version of it. The music tempo is just off and it's not nearly as grand as the animated version is. I also miss Anya's dress transformation, which I know would have been a struggle to do, but they did do it for the Macy's Thanksgiving Parade.

I do like the overall focus on Anya's family since her connection to them is completely absent in the movie, minus her relationship with her grandmother. The loss and trauma that both Anya and the Empress feel is much more apparent here, which is more realistic. The reunion scene is great and much longer than the movie, although there are some lines from the movie's scene I miss. The only thing I felt didn't work was the writing of Anya's character in terms of her going along with Dimitri's plot. Act 1 makes very clear that she isn't sure who she actually is but willing to go along with his scheme in case it is true. Act 2 keeps this up as well, until after the Empress refuses to see her. It doesn't really make sense then that suddenly she blames Dimitri for using her to trick the Empress when Anya was aware of this all along. In the movie, she more truly believes that she is Anastasia and the shock to her is when she learns that Dimitri is a conman holding auditions to find an Anastasia, but all of that is info she's already privy to here.

I'm still not the biggest fan of the ending. I like the new ambiguous tone, since it feels like it can match up with history, but I'd prefer a more meaningful reunion between Anya and Dimitri like in the animated version. She returns the music box at the end to her grandmother, while in the film, it was the crown she gave behind. I felt the crown was more poignant because it shows that she renounces her royal title while still keeping the connection with her grandmother. It felt unnecessary to give up the music box. I also have grown to like Anya's red dress at the end, but I wish they went with the movie version. However, I suppose they felt that she technically wears that imperial dress at the beginning of the film so I can understand the reasoning behind this change. It still seems a little odd though that the musical references how red is the new communist color for Russia so many times, and then sticks Anya in a red gown at the end. One new thing I noticed was that a brief part of "At the Beginning" has been incorporated in the score during the end and I really loved this inclusion. I remember people all over were clamoring for "At the Beginning" to be included in the musical, so this was a nice treat for the fans.

The ballet scene was superb and even better live than I could have expected. This scene was perhaps the most well received because of the expertise of the dancers and the beautiful medley of the Swan Lake music with Anastasia's score. I'm glad that Swan Lake was more historically accurate to the setting than Cinderella was in the animated musical, although Cinderella better fits the "My Fair Lady"/rags to riches theme of the film, whereas Swan Lake is more thematically appropriate to the love triangle formulated in the musical.

If I'm a little nitpicky with some of these details, it's only because I love the original film so much so there are things in there that I wish could have been incorporated. However, the musical already takes as many elements from the film as it can while being far more historically accurate. I'm sure lots of the stuff from the film that I miss wouldn't match the facts, such as how the Empress is referred to as "grandmama" by Anastasia in the film, but they make a big deal in the musical out of how she was never grandmama but "nana." Things like this and the scent that the Empress wore (peppermint in the movie, but something with orange in the musical) aren't really a big deal at the end of the day.

After the show ended, I heard one guy comment that usually when he watches musicals, he doesn't care much for the songs as he's more into the story. He remarked that for this show, it was the exact opposite case, because while he felt that the story was a bit weak,the songs were all so amazing and they really captivated him. Just as superb as the songs though are the costumes and sets which were all stunning and highly praised as well. I heard people say that they never usually even notice sets during musicals but they were all so outstanding in this one that they feel the need to vocally praise them. Overall, I would recommend the musical for any fans of the movie and anyone who likes historical dramas.


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PostPosted: Sun Feb 17, 2019 2:47 am 
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Wow, it sounds like the show was really good! Thank you for giving us very in-depth and detailed thoughts! I never thought singers in even a touring show would struggle with notes, but I guess now I know, huh? Glad most of the singing was great and that the lead's was incredible! I liked Sophie in the animated film as well, but it sounds like it would be great to see the comedy they did have! I agree that seeing the famous people in Paris probably would have helped make the show even better. I wish Anastasia in "Once Upon a December" could have had a dress transformation as well!

How was Anya more connected to her family? If only her Grandmother survived, isn't that only one person, and she was in the animated film? Or is Lily also part of her family? Was Sophie? You're write-up of Anya's knowledge and feelings one Dimitri's con do make how she acted later sound really weird so I agree with you it should have been more like the movie. I also agree with you on the crown being left behind being better than the music box. Does Anastasia really wear the exact same dress in the end of the movie as she does in the beginning of the movie? I like the red dress but maybe it should have been a different color. But I don't think it had any connection to Communism so I think it's alright. It's so pretty anyway! I didn't think about how the choice of Cinderella for the ballet fit Anya's story, but I'm glad Swan Lake was both more accurate and more fitting for the musical's story.

My one friend who saw it said the ever changing sets were distracting, so I wonder how they would be to me if I could see it. I wish I could see it but the movie isn't one of my top favorites, just one I really like and think is really good, so I think I'd only spend my money on it if people I knew really wanted to go. But I sure wish I was rich enough to just see it on a whim! Hey, who knows, maybe I will see it one day! Sure sounds like a great show!

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PostPosted: Sun Feb 17, 2019 3:51 am 
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Everyone else seemed to really like Gleb's actor so maybe it was just me. Throughout the character's journey, Gleb is supposed to be really struggling because he's forced to hold so much back about his true feelings and emotions so I wonder if what I considered "forced" about his singing was actually meant to be part of the performance. The main thing I noticed was that Dimitri and Gleb both couldn't project their voices so they sometimes got drowned out from the instrumental music but this was never an issue with Anya's actress.

Lily is a lot different from Sophie but she's hilarious in her own way. I was reluctant to see a new character in the part but I thoroughly enjoyed her and Lily has quite a fan following now herself.

The animated movie glosses over Anya's family. We only see them in portraits or in the background of some scenes, like the intro, Once Upon a December, and the dream/nightmare sequence, but even so, they have little to no presence. However, for the musical, the prologue features them more, especially Anastasia's mother who is virtually nonexistent in the movie. Even Anastasia's little brother gets mentioned a lot because he was apparently her real life best friend and he's the other character from her family who really got the shaft in the movie. The grandmother also mentions losing the rest of the family as well more. Lily is the lady in waiting for the Empress but I don't think she is a cousin like Sophie was. We do see some lesser Romanovs in the show who survived, one used for comic relief because he basically wants to receive the Empress' inheritance.

The imperial gown she wears at the beginning of the show is all pink. In the animated movie, the imperial gown is worn at the end of the film, when she's making her grand return at a ball, and it's gold and pink. The animated movie version was based off of a real dress that Anastasia and her sisters wore in photographs. The photos were black and white, but the sisters used to color the photos by tinting them. Usually the dresses were colored pink which is why for the musical, they colored the dresses for all the sisters pink. However, sometimes each sister would give herself a different color. I believe Anastasia most consistently colored her dress pink so people have speculated that this was her favorite color. So essentially the dress she wears at the beginning of the musical is supposed to be the dress she wears at the end of the animated movie.

The funny thing is that I remember when the show came out, people were really criticizing the sets and the digital projection process used. They said it was flashy, took attention away from the rest of the cast and props, and was generally unappealing and didn't look realistic enough. I was expecting that as well when I watched the show but I was blown away at how amazing the sets and digital projection were in combination. Like I said, so was everyone else in the audience. My guess is that they heard about the criticism and worked on the issues to make everything look better and more convincing. If that was the case, then they really succeeded!

Even for the show I watched, I had to pay a hefty amount of money to get a ticket, but the seat I got was great. It was pretty much right in the front and smack dab in the middle. Since this is one of my fav films, I felt it was all right to splurge just once. I also got a program and key chain for myself although I wish they had a doll for Anastasia like how the Disney Broadway shows make dolls for their princesses (Belle, Ariel, and Jasmine come to mind). I would love to fly to NYC though and watch the Broadway one but that's a pipe dream as of now, especially since by the end of March, it'll be closing. The National Tour will continue to 2020 though, so maybe you'll get a chance to see it!


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PostPosted: Sun Feb 17, 2019 8:00 am 
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I didn't know there were so many changes in the stage musical. I just read a brief article on Playbill's website about Gleb. He has feelings for Anastasia?


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 18, 2019 1:50 am 
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Wow, thank you for all the information JeanGrey! It's cool to know all that, especially about Anastasia's favorite color and gowns. Glad that her family was covered more in the musical! Gleb was probably truly struggling, I don't see why holding back on emotions means barely making it through notes. Glad you got to see the show. I doubt I will end up seeing it since it's closing and the tour won't last forever, but if any friends wanted to go I'd go if the price wasn't too high.

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PostPosted: Mon Feb 18, 2019 7:34 pm 
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blackcauldron85 wrote:
I didn't know there were so many changes in the stage musical. I just read a brief article on Playbill's website about Gleb. He has feelings for Anastasia?

Do you mean changes from the animated film to the musical, or changes from the earliest version of the musical to the latest version we have now?

Yes, the spoiler is correct. That was also true in the earliest version of the musical which I also saw and it's also why they used the Swan Lake parallels.

Disney Duster wrote:
Wow, thank you for all the information JeanGrey! It's cool to know all that, especially about Anastasia's favorite color and gowns. Glad that her family was covered more in the musical! Gleb was probably truly struggling, I don't see why holding back on emotions means barely making it through notes. Glad you got to see the show. I doubt I will end up seeing it since it's closing and the tour won't last forever, but if any friends wanted to go I'd go if the price wasn't too high.

Glad you enjoyed the info! I'm sure there's a lot more info out there about the sisters, but these are just the few things I know besides the fact that each sister had a favorite type of flower and Anastasia's were violets.

You can probably find the musical online anyway which might be a better choice since this isn't one of your favorites. I wish they would release a DVD of it though, especially now that it's ending. I suppose if nothing else, we can count on Disney to make a live-action film for it now, especially since it's only about a month before it'll officially be Disney property. I was looking at a list of animated princeses on Tumblr the other day, and the user had already classified Anastasia and Thumbelina as Disney property now so that her list won't be outdated in the future. That was a heartening reminder!


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 18, 2019 8:49 pm 
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JeanGreyForever wrote:
Do you mean changes from the animated film to the musical, or changes from the earliest version of the musical to the latest version we have now?

Yes, the spoiler is correct. That was also true in the earliest version of the musical which I also saw and it's also why they used the Swan Lake parallels.


I meant from the film to the musical. I remember reading that Rasputin wouldn't be in it, but I didn't remember reading about his replacement.

Do you really think they'll have Thumbelina and Anastasia with the Disney Princesses?? (I do love them both...)


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 18, 2019 9:09 pm 
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blackcauldron85 wrote:
I meant from the film to the musical. I remember reading that Rasputin wouldn't be in it, but I didn't remember reading about his replacement.

Do you really think they'll have Thumbelina and Anastasia with the Disney Princesses?? (I do love them both...)

Oh ok. Yes, Rasputin doesn't make it in, nor is he even mentioned. His song is scrapped as well although the melody of the song is retained for a new song, one more somber in tone (Stay, I Pray You). The musical overall is a lot more adult and mature, so there's more emphasis on the horrors of losing one's entire family to execution and the trauma that results from that. While Anya is still spunky, she's also clearly suffering from PTSD and a lot more emotional and vulnerable, whereas in the animated movie, we only occasionally see moments of vulnerability and it's more on being alone than from any past trauma. A lot of fans have said they felt that just as they grew, so did the film they loved which is nice because they can appreciate the musical more.

I'm not really sure how Disney plans to deal with Thumbelina and Anastasia. I love them both as well but honestly Thumbelina isn't very popular and not even well known with her movie having been a huge flop. Then again, The Swan Princess was initially a flop but that's built itself into a franchise and carved a legacy.

As for Anastasia, that one actually is comparable to Disney's best, and is frequently associated with Disney too, probably the most mistaken animated feature for Disney. It's proved to have an enduring legacy that rivals some of Disney's classics which is a pretty big deal considering that it doesn't have Disney churning out the constant promotion that all the Disney classics get. I read online somewhere that somebody asked somebody working for Disney about any future plans for Anastasia and the DP line but apparently there were no plans. However, I don't put too much weight into what some anonymous users claim to know, especially since there were similar reports about Elsa and Anna joining the franchise and that never materialized.


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 19, 2019 1:14 am 
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Awww, I know you love Anastasia, JeanGrey. I only count WDAS princesses as Disney Princesses but I'm glad something makes you happy about Disney owning her.

We'll see if I ever find the musical online, that would be great!

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PostPosted: Tue Feb 19, 2019 2:08 am 
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What's your take on Giselle then if she had been added to the lineup? I already know your thoughts on Merida lol.


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