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Both my husband and I thoroughly enjoyed An American in Paris which received the 2015 Tony Award for new musical. The balletic musical was inspired by the 1951 film starring Gene Kelly, and, like film, used music and lyrics by George Gershwin and Ira Gershwin. The story itself was highly conventional without any pretension to philosophical gravitas, though it added elements of historical seriousness by stressing its historical context: Paris was just liberated by American troops, and the heavy weight of Nazism was underscored by the beginning images as well as the story element involving the love interest Lise, who is Jewish. However, the show was essentially about songs and dance. It boasted a Principal dancer with New York City Ballet Robert Fairchild in the role of Jerry Mulligan( the American in Paris), and a former soloist with Miami City Ballet Sara Esty in the role of Lise Dassin, the girl Jerry falls in love with. Since major dance numbers were danced by ballet dancers and music was very familiar, I felt the whole production was more heavily balanced toward dance. In a way, I think this production suggests a new direction that American ballet companies may explore.

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