The Time Machine Musical

musicals and operas · mofoco. · Ages 13+ · United States

world premiere
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JEFF LAUB uncertified reviewer June 09, 2013
This review applies to the preview performance, before which we were warned by the director that this was only their second time performing with full tech, so there may be issues. Despite this warning, I thought that the tech was overall very good, except for some occasional feedback issues and some sound balance problems. During some numbers, I thought that the live band drowned out the singing, although I often have that problem at musicals, so maybe I have bad ears for live theatre. The description of the show says that this is a one-hour version of a two-hour show, and I definitely felt that, mainly in the storytelling. This felt like a presentation of just the songs and an omission of most of the narrative scenes. I'm not saying th... full review
ANONYMOUS uncertified reviewer June 09, 2013
This show left me embarrassed for the actors on stage. The lack of direction (demonstrated by the abundance of aimless wandering about on stage) and the varying levels of vocal talent on top of a nearly non-existant story had me counting down the songs in the program until I would be able to flee the theater. At least a few audience members left before the end of Act I - I wish I had snuck out with them. It's incredible to think that this show is actually based on a classic book. There is hardly any dialog and the songs are barely intelligible enough to tell a story. There are no interesting stakes, I didn't have any interest in the characters, and the music was a combination of mediocre, wispily-sung ballads and one strange rap number. T... full review
PAUL MAJOR uncertified reviewer June 10, 2013
Some of these reviews have entirely missed the concept of what a tech-heavy preview night is. When the director steps on stage and spells out that what you're about to witness is essentially a rehearsal, an audience needs to set an appropriate level of expectation (in my opinion). I thought this was a clever and very fun musical. Understanding that there were serious sound issues (and the issue of what we saw being a condensation of what would otherwise be a 2 hour show), I personally believe this show could be a great success. The music is all fun and some of the numbers are particularly memorable. I liked "Endless Spirit" the most, and using the reprise at the end to roll out the curtain call was smart. The defeat of the Morlock king w... full review
SONYA ROKES uncertified reviewer June 10, 2013
I'm surprised at the tone of these reviews. First of all, who critically reviews a show based on its first preview/invited dress rehearsal? And, more importantly, I thought the whole point of a "Fringe" festival is that the work presented is being developed outside the mainstream (hence, on the "fringe"). The writing, directing, choreography and acting were all focused, creative, earnest and clearly a labor of love -- of the piece, of the work and of theater in general. I saw a reading of this years ago, and it's been a fascinating development process. Seriously, the whole point of an event like this is to take risks, try something new, focus on the process and to make art. Anyone who writes an anonymous review running down this kind... full review
JUSTIN HALIBAN uncertified reviewer June 10, 2013
I don't usually write reviews but felt the need to here. I happened upon this show not as a friend of the cast or anything like that so consider this review unadulterated. I loved this show. I felt the music was really good to the point of still singing some of the songs the next morning. At the beginning of the show (I'm assuming) the director came on stage and informed the audience that this was an open dress tech and could possibly stop the show. There were technical problems with some mics but that was about it. The show itself was very daring in it's staging and concept which I'm assuming is the whole point of the Fringe Festival, to stretch the boundaries of theater arts. I won't spoil the essence of it by describing too much in d... full review
LOU F uncertified reviewer June 10, 2013
I really enjoyed this show. The music covers a lot of different styles, and is excellent throughout. And the energy of the actors is full-on, and just right for the wild ride of the story. Looking forward to seeing the full two hour version.... full review
TONI CREY uncertified reviewer June 13, 2013
I you don't have a love for musical theater, please take your snarky attitude down the street to the bar, and don't come see incredible ensemble of talent, exceptional musical songwriting, conceptual choreography and a brilliant take on a timeless subject - a man out of time with his world. Hey, I can relate and I'm a chick. If you don't allow your judgment from your eight grade English class reading "The Time Machine" book, you will be highly entertained by outstanding performances and amazing music that speaks of people out of time with themselves and those around them, reviving the spirit, and aligning with their higher self. Joshua Fardon does a brilliant job of taking Steve's Altman's genius in music writing and composing themes ... full review
JAMES O'FALLON uncertified reviewer June 12, 2013
Enjoyed the show, it flew by. It was pure fun throughout, the choreography clever and energetic, the songs tracing an emotional line that connected with me. "Going back to believing" was my favorite, along with "High" and "Endless Spirit", though every cast member had their moments. The staging was well executed, even small details like having the cast drift on stage individually instead of appearing as a group. The tone of the piece was far removed from the darkness of the Wells source material, but it seemed right, carrying themes of love, connecting with others in a world vast and mysterious. Definitely going back for another look.... full review
FRANK ANTONELLI uncertified reviewer June 14, 2013
Steve Altman's The Time Machine (a 1-hour revue of his 2+ hour rock musical) is a delight, filled with infectious songs, strong performers, inventive direction, a tight band, and a surprising sense of humor which kept me and my friends - and the entire the audience - thoroughly engaged from beginning to end. We would definitely come back if they put up the second hour - it was that good. ... full review
ANONYMOUS uncertified reviewer June 14, 2013
Not all of it is my thing but rock musicals aren't really my thing anyway. You don't get a lot of the story because this is more of a musical revue that uses The Time Machine characters and broad plot points as a springboard to take the audience on a musical trip through time, hitting lots of musical genres and styles from decades past - lots of 60s, some touching on disco, 80s power ballad, and even hip hop. Imagine: rapping Morlocks. It's a weird, trippy moment that ended up being one of my favorites. A lot of these songs really stick with you afterwards which I think is a testament not only to the talent of the composer but also to the ensemble that performed them. A lot of their solo sung lines get a bit swallowed, or drowned out by t... full review