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Tuesday 14 December 2021

'Jagged Little Pill': REVIEW + red carpet pics, Theatre Royal Sydney

'Jagged Little Pill' the album was a such a zeitgeist moment in time when it hit our ears for the first time, and it was a moment in time when the word 'angst' to describe an album was used like never before!

Released in 1995, singer Alanis Morissette, the Canadian-American musician, singer, songwriter and actress packed so many emotions into this album, and it became an anthemic anthology for millions.

In fact, over 30 millions - with 30 million albums sold!

And now, 25 years later the Broadway production takes us back to that 'anguish'.

With music by Alanis Morissette and Glen Ballard, lyrics by Morissette, based on a book by the extraordinary and prolific Diablo Cody with additional music by Michael Farrell and Guy Sigsworth, the musical is inspired by THAT album and deals with the aforementioned pain, as well as healing, and ultimately empowerment. It premiered at the American Repertory Theater in Cambridge, Massachusetts in May 2018. The show began previews on Broadway in November 2019, and opened on December 5, 2019. 'Jagged Little Pill' won two awards on 15 nonimations, the most of any show for the 2019 - 2020 season! It also won a Grammy for Best Musical Theater Album.

The story centres around the Healys, an upper-middle-class Connecticut family ruled by mother Mary Jane (Natalie Bassingthwaite), with husband Steve (Tim Draxl) and their kids Frankie (Emily Nkomo) and Liam (Liam Head).

Steve is a massive workaholic, meanwhile Liam just got into Harvard, and adopted daughter Frankie is a happy soul though experimenting sexually with her best bud, non-binary Jo (the extraordinary Maggie McKenna - she's the daughter of THAT Gina Riley, yep 'Kath and Kim' and wow those pipes are clearly a hereditary trait). For me, singer Aydan is also a stand out in the show...

Mary Jane is lonely, and buying backstreet oxycodone to numb her pain, and while there are many story arcs, many centre around her.

It's so very cool to see how each song is interwoven into the script... and it may surprise you.

You'll sing along in your head to every single lyric and THIS will be the show everyone will be talking about.

The strong themes mean that 'Jagged Little Pill' is recommended for ages 14 and up, and this production contains strong language, adult themes, drug use, and moments of sexual violence that might be quite confronting for some. During some of these scenes one young lady in front of me wiped away her tears, and it is that kind of emotional rollercoaster ride.

The Original Broadway Cast Recording of Jagged Little Pill is also available to purchase, download, and stream on all major services. Listen to it on Spotify here.

Here are some red carpet pics from the Australian premiere of 'Jagged Little Pill', from Thursday 9 December, at the NEWLY refurbished Theatre Royal Sydney - the grand old lady is looking mighty fine after a huge refresh, and it was so wonderfully historic to experience a show during this special moment in time - Josie's Juice was fortunate to attend this premiere, and you can catch more photos on www.instagram.com/josiesjuicejournalist

Pic credit: James D. Morgan, Getty Images. 


'Jagged Little Pill' runs for two hours and 40 minutes, including one 20 minute intermission.

For more info: https://www.jaggedmusical.com

And to buy tickets go HERE.

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