Hadestown, the winner of eight Tony Awards in 2019 (including Best New Musical), is in Atlanta at the Fox Theater now through January 15th! And last night, opening night, I had the opportunity to preview the musical… and saying that I fell in love is a bit of an understatement.
While I wasn’t familiar with the music heading into last night’s performance, I was very familiar with the tale that the musical is based on, that of Orpheus and Eurydice. Their famous greek myth gets reimagined in Hadestown.
The musical follows two intertwining love stories. There are the young dreamers, Orpheus and Eurydice. And there’s King Hades and his wife, Persephone. The story takes us to hell and back again, all while enchanting us with haunting melodies that blend modern American folk music with New Orleans-inspired jazz effortlessly.
While the story itself lends itself well to the show’s overall vibe, every element empowers the overall production. The sets are beautifully designed, the performances showcase incredible talent, and the choreography gave me chills throughout, most notably during “Wait for Me.”
Atlanta’s opening night performance featured several understudy cast members. And while that may sound discouraging – I can’t imagine the performances being any more incredible than what played out in front of me — specifically, Courtney Lauster’s as Eurydice.
Lauster’s voice was so uniquely memorable and mesmerizing. If she had a solo album for sale in the lobby, I would have bought it on the spot. Her performance wasn’t the evening’s only strong act, though. Chibueze Ihuoma, Brit West, and Nathan Lee Graham were also brillant. And the supporting cast all delivered unforgettable performances as well. Simply put, it was musical perfection.
To provide a bit more background on the musical, Hadestown comes from the creative genius of Tony Award winner Anaïs Mitchell. And Mitchell further developed the project for Broadway with Tony Award winner Rachel Chavkin. Hadestown marks the first time in over a decade that a woman has been the solo author of a Broadway musical: writing the music, lyrics, and book. Furthermore, it’s only the fourth time in Broadway history that a woman has been the solo author.
The project’s origins trace back to an indie theater project that toured Vermont, which Mitchell then turned into an album. Then, through collaboration with Chavkin, the music grew into the smash Broadway hit we know today.
Hadestown isn’t one you want to miss.
Hadestown in Atlanta
Hadestown will play tonight and Thursday at 7:30 p.m., Friday at 8 p.m., Saturday at 2 p.m. and 8 p.m., and Sunday at 1 p.m. and 6:30 p.m. You can pick up ticks at FoxTheatre.org/Hadestown or by calling (855)-285-8499.