Jekyll & Hyde
Music By: Frank Wildhorn
Lyrics By: Leslie Bricusse
Distributed by: Broadway Records
Reviewed by Melissa Minners
Based on the Robert Louis Stevenson novella The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, the musical known as Jekyll & Hyde features music by Frank Wildhorn and lyrics by Leslie Bricusse. Set for a revival on Broadway for a limited engagement in 2013, the musical will star Constantine Maroulis as Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, with Deborah Cox, Teal Wicks, Tom Hewitt, Shannon Magrane, Carly Robyn Green and Corey Brunish.
Jekyll & Hyde tells the tale of Henry Jekyll, a young doctor whose father's comatose state inspires him to discover why man is both good and evil. In his experiment to separate the evil from the good, Jekyll uses himself as a test subject. His experiments bring out a monstrously evil personality, Edward Hyde. Though Jekyll is a man obsessed, he is kind and gentle when compared to his alter ego Hyde. In fact, Hyde is a brutal and murderous man. Can Dr. Jekyll control the beast within or will Hyde destroy all that is good in Jekyll's life?
I must confess, I have never read The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, although I have heard of the tale. However, since listening to the Jekyll & Hyde: 2012 Concept Recording, I can't wait to get my hands on a copy of the novella. I know it won't be exactly the same, but if the story is half as good as the musical based upon it, I will be quite happy.
I have never been a fan of Constantine Maroulis, but his performance as both Jekyll and Hyde is excellent. He handles the different vocal ranges of the two characters - baritone for Jekyll and tenor for Hyde - very well. Deborah Cox and Teal Wicks also provide some beautiful vocals and I love the way their voices harmonize with each other and with the man they both love. And make no mistake about it, despite the fact that the musical is based on a book about a scientist gone mad, the musical is very much a love story, and a tragic one at that.
The songs created by Frank Wildhorn and Leslie Bricusse are incredibly emotional affairs, expressing love, joy and angst in an incredibly captivating way. The lyrics are heartfelt and full of meaning, but they are also quite catchy and I found myself singing along with the album upon my second listen.
This version of Jekyll & Hyde is a musical along the lines of Wicked in that it strives to tell the tale of a man whose obsession with doing good brings about terrible tragedy and pain in the end through strong music and memorable lyrics. I recommend this album to anyone who enjoys the darker Broadway musicals of our time. Based on the 2012 Concept Recording, I expect that this revival of Jekyll & Hyde will do exceptionally well on Broadway.