(photo by lucetg)Round of applause for 2 Pianos 4 Hands
Dykstra-Greenblatt classic is still delightful and appealing nearly 20 years later
Who knew piano lessons could impart such a universal message?
I’m a newbie to the play, which was first performed nearly 20 years ago in Toronto. Since then, the show has been a certifiable Canadian theatre hit, touring round the world to 2 million people in more than 200 cities, including Montreal in ‘97 and ‘99.
It’s clear why: 2 Pianos is hard to mess up and hard to hate. It’s got zippy writing, slapstick comedy and an entertaining premise. A series of musical vignettes illustrate the highs and lows of embracing a skill, and the life lessons that come along the way. It’s both quirky and elegant.
“Ted and Richard” need to be able to sing and play piano proficiently, have excellent comedic timing and act, to boot. They need to be the young student, the nagging parent, the sleepy teacher, the nervous high school student.
They perform a myriad of composers, from Bach, Chopin and Billy Joel with aplomb. The comedic moments are sharp, and the dramatic ones are dark and difficult without being too treacly.
Running Time: 155 minutes including intermission