Jagged Little Pill is a musical based on the 1995 album of the same name by Alanis Morissette. It covers an array of mature themes; the trauma of being a rape survivor, an exploration of ones sexuality, a struggling marriage, drug dependance and the slippery slope into addiction, speaking up for the truth even when it is difficult, the consequences of being a bystander, the negative emotions when a crush ends up being with someone else, and more. I was able to preview this performance at the Hobby Center in Houston, TX on August 29th, 2023; performed by Theater Under the Stars.
The show highlights the drama of the Healy family; Mary Jane Healy tries to hold the family together, when her adopted colored daughter Frankie does not feel like she’s a part of the family and her husband Steve is a workaholic. The saving grace is the Harvard bound son Nick Healy; that is until the events at a party change everyone’s life.
The screenplay juggles so many different themes it wishes to cover and that did affect the pacing. It’s a slow 1st act. There’s a variety of characters you learn about and it does feel like it takes awhile to see these variety of conflicts progressing because of it. However, these were all such intriguing themes that were explored and the characters themselves were all fleshed out that I was interested enough to see what would be the end result for the Healy family. It is also impressive how this show was put together because they are utilizing music that comes from an album that was released 20 years ago to create an original story with songs that can’t be changed to fit the narrative.
Listen to the music wherever you stream music to see if these songs that are in that rock/pop genre are your cup of tea. I liked most of them and between the songs, abstract dancing, acting, and vocals; there was enough for me to recommend the show.
Playing at the Hobby Center until September 10th.
To get tickets to a performance, click here.
|Final Verdict:||Covers an array of mature themes with a mostly engaging execution|