“Divorced, Beheaded, Died, Divorced, Beheaded, Survived.” Such was the fate of the six wives of Henry VIII, a very consequential English king with an appetite for women (among other things) and desperate for a male heir. The ultimate irony is that his daughter with Anne Boleyn (his second wife whom he beheaded) became one of the most powerful monarchs in history—Queen Elizabeth I. Queens of every kind filled the audience for the much-heralded production of “SIX” at the Hippodrome—mothers, daughters, and girlfriends with their besties (some wearing crowns and one even carrying a scepter) all came to celebrate the power of women. The musical is the winner of 23 awards (during the challenging 2020-21 Broadway season), including the Tony Award® for Best Original Score (Music and Lyrics) and Costume Design (gloriously designed by Gabriella Slade—echoing some inspiration from “Starlight Express,” without roller skates) as well as the Outer Critics Circle Award for Best Musical.
…a wonderful history lesson for girls (and boys alike) wrapped up in a supremely fun and breathtaking jewel of a show.
This sparkling, face-paced musical of only 80 minutes showcases the power-house talent found in every aspect of the production. Think of a concert that mashes up the music, performance, and dance influences of today’s female music icons (Beyoncé, Adele, Rihanna, Arianna Grande, and Alicia Keys, to name a few) and incorporates Euro-pop, disco, hip-hop, punk, among others (fantastic choreography by Carrie-Anne Ingrouille and associate choreographer Eliza Ohman. The fabulous, four-piece women-led band performed on stage and the beautiful and electric (literally and figuratively) concert-like lighting design by Tim Deiling added to the magic.
Gerianne Pérez as Catherine of Aragon (‘No Way”), Zan Berube as Anne Boleyn (“Don’t Lose Ur Head”), Amina Faye as Jane Seymour (“Heart of Stone”), Terica Marie as Anne of Cleves (“Get Down”), Aline Mayagoitia as Katherine Howard (“All You Wanna Do”), and Sydney Parra as Catherine Parr (“I Don’t Need Your Love”) brought down the house as the wives, reimagined as a pop girl group. Each has her moment in the spotlight as they compete with one another in their solos, asking the audience to vote for the wife with the saddest tale. The other ladies act as backup dancers/singers for the highlighted soloist. These ladies could go toe-to-toe with any Broadway cast with their energetic and flawless performances (several in their National Tour debuts!)
Each wife is given a distinct personality based on the historical background of these real-life figures as well as the pop icons that inspired their characterizations called “Queenspiration.” This can be found in the program and is a fantastic guide for the uninitiated and includes the artists mentioned above as well as others. Like a spoonful of sugar, this is a wonderful history lesson for girls (and boys alike) wrapped up in a supremely fun and breathtaking jewel of a show.
Running time: 80 minutes with no intermission.
Note: “The Hippodrome Foundation and the Baltimore Design School (BDS) partnered to create SIX-inspired costumes. Over the past several months, 14 BDS students have been working on costumes to be displayed at the theatre May 9-14 during the run of SIX. Visit the South Two lobby (above the box office) to see the costumes before the show…”
“SIX” runs through May 14 at the Hippodrome Theatre, 12 North Eutaw Street, Baltimore, MD 21201. For more information and tickets, go online.