Thanks to my membership in the Tampa Bay Bloggers and their partnership with the Straz Center I received two complimentary tickets for the purposes of review to The Bodyguard. This has not impacted my review and all opinions below are my own.
Let me start by saying – I had no idea there even WAS a musical called The Bodyguard until it came here to Tampa Bay. I don’t have cable, and have intentionally not been watching the news, so I’ve been quite out of the loop in terms of many things related to entertainment. However, I had never seen the movie, but I LOVE musicals, so I jumped at the chance to see the production.
Funnily enough, my husband insisted I watch the movie before the play. So, I watched it last night. I’m actually kind of glad I did because it prepared me for some of the things that would have otherwise shocked me.
You see, after a family tragedy that happened December 2016, I’m hyper-sensitive these days to gun violence. Therefore, knowing what to expect going in, helped me to focus on the joyful elements of the show. My husband is a brilliant man, and knew this all to well about me, so I’m extra grateful he had me watch the movie first.
And, if I’m honest, I really loved the movie. It made me that much more excited to see the musical too. Might seem weird since it gave away much of the plot, but it’s true! (p.s. some of the plot IS different in the stage production vs. the movie)
The Bodyguard – What Straz Said About it (spoilers ahead)
Based on the smash hit film, the award-winning musical will star Grammy® Award nominee and R&B superstar Deborah Cox!
Former Secret Service agent turned bodyguard, Frank Farmer, is hired to protect superstar Rachel Marron from an unknown stalker. Each expects to be in charge; what they don’t expect is to fall in love.
A breathtakingly romantic thriller, THE BODYGUARD features a host of irresistible classics including “Queen of the Night,” “So Emotional,” “One Moment in Time,” “Saving All My Love,” “Run to You,” “I Have Nothing,” “I Wanna Dance with Somebody” and one of the biggest selling songs of all time – “I Will Always Love You.”
The Bodyguard – My Review
I have to say that out of all the musicals I’ve been to, this one was CRAZY good. In fact, dare I say it might have been one of the best ones I’ve EVER seen. Then again, it felt more like I was seeing a concert than attending a musical in the “traditional” sense- whatever that means.
Let’s put it this way – I’ve always wanted to attend a Whitney Houston concert, and after watching this production tonight – I now feel like I have. You know, only with added drama and story to it. Haha!
From the opening act to the closing number I was either on edge of my seat, tapping my toes, or I was up on my feet. I also totally sang along to my favorite songs – as did much of the audience .. which I loved by the way. Made for a fun and interactive experience.
And, I have to say this about Miss Deborah Cox – she was absolutely spectacular in this role! The way that she could command the stage, and belt out those vocals was like nothing I’ve ever seen in a live act before. I actually closed my eyes for a moment, and almost believed I was sitting in a Whitney Houston concert!
The notes that Whitney could hit are clearly not easy to hit, but Mrs. Cox did it with such grace and ease that you can tell she knows her craft, and she owns her craft. Watching her sing and perform took my breath away, and gave me all the goosebumps multiple times.
To put it mildly – I would absolutely recommend to anybody who is considering seeing this musical that they buy a ticket right now.
From the costumes to actors, the songs to the choreography, even the lines the actors were supposed to say – every single bit of this musical was top-notch. It was just ahhhhhhhmazing. If given the chance, I would see it again over and over and over again!
The Bodyguard is playing at The Straz Center now through March 25, 2018. Regularly priced tickets are $40-$123. To see all the shows playing at the Straz, click HERE!
Heads up if you’re going: Deborah Cox is not scheduled to perform at the Sunday Evening performance. And, The Bodyguard contains some adult language, mature situations and brief simulated gun shots and violence.
For just a glimpse into WHY this show was so amazing, check out this interview Mrs. Cox did with Wendy Williams where she expresses just how much she wanted it to be done right:
Also… just in case you are as curious as I was…
- Deborah Cox – Rachel Marron
- Judson Mills – Frank Farmer
- Alex Corrado – Tony Scibelli
- Charles Gray – Bill Devaney
- Jonathan Hadley – Sy Spector
- Kevelin B. Jones III – Fletcher
- Sebastian Maynard-Palmer – Fletcher
- Jorge Paniagua – The Stalker
- Jasmin Richardson – Nicki Marron
- Mark McCullough – Thomas Ray Court
- Elyssa Jo Brown – Swing
- Henry Byalikov – Ensemble
- Willie Dee – Swing
- Megan Elyse Fulmer – Ensemble
- Devinn Harris – Ensemble
- Alex Jackson – Swing
- Megan Melville – Ensemble
- DeQuina Moore – Ensemble
- Kevin Mylrea – Ensemble
- Stefan Raulston – Ensemble
- Matthew Schmidt – Ensemble
- Amber Snow – Ensemble
- Lauren Tanner – Swing
- Naomi C. Walley – Ensemble