A few other thoughts on the show:
- A trio of great voices belonging to charismatic actors lead the show. Dominic Fortuna (who seems to have wandered over from Jersey Boys) is sympathetic as Frank's down on his luck dad, whose schemes are never quite as successful as his son's. Merrit David Janes is FBI Agent Hanratty, who's trying to catch Frank, and eventually does. It's a role that won Norbert Leo Butz a Tony last year, and Merrit gives it the energy and humor required. Last but not least, Stephen Anthony is the star of the show as our charming hero/antihero. He's got a great voice and inhabits all of Frank's various guises with ease, while still letting us see the lost and searching boy underneath.
- The obligatory romance is one of the least successful subplots; the real relationship driving the show is between Frank and Hanratty. Though they only share a few scenes together, theirs is the most interesting relationship and most compelling chemistry.
- The ensemble is fantastic in their 60s wardrobe; they look, move, and sound great.
- The show is set up as Frank telling his story on a 60s variety show, complete with colorful graphics displayed on the backdrop of the stage, and an awesome band onstage, dressed in white tuxes.
- The score is energetic and fun; highlights include "Don't Break the Rules" (Hanratty's shining moment), Frank's emotional "Good-Bye," and the final duet between Frank and Hanratty - "Strange But True," which pretty much sums up the plot.
On the night I attended, "the real Frank Abagnale Jr." was there for a Q&A after the show. He just happened to be in town speaking to US Bank about fraud prevention, and popped into the theater to talk to the audience. It was obvious from his answers that he's been talking about this for a long time and has been asked everything multiple times. But it was fascinating to hear more details about his story from the man who lived it, and find out what is real and what is Hollywoodized or Broadwayized. As for the musical version of his story, he said, "I kind of even like it more than the movie." I think I kind of agree.
|Stephen Anthony as Frank leads the cast of Catch Me If You Can|
*I received one complementary ticket to Opening Night of Catch Me If You Can.