Review: Daddy Long Legs

One of the first shows I saw this summer was the off-Broadway musical, Daddy Long Legs. And despite the nearly two dozen shows I’ve seen, it has remained one of my absolute favorites!

Based on a 1912 children’s novel by Jean Webster, the show follows the story of Jerusha Abbott, an orphan from New England who is gifted with a college education by a mysterious benefactor. That mysterious benefactor is actually not the old man that she imagines at all but the young and handsome Jervis Pendleton. I don’t want to give away any more of the plot, but let me say that you can tell that it’s based on a children’s novel -- in all the best ways.

While Paul Alexander Nolan (who I saw in Bright Star) originated the role of Jervis Off-Broadway and appears on the cast album, I got to see Adam Halpin in the lead male role. This was so special to me because Adam is married to his co-star Megan McGinnis! Both of them were incredibly talented actors and singers and their chemistry (of course) was off the charts. One of the unique things about the show is that there are only two roles and thus those two actors carry the show entirely.

I downloaded the cast album the day that I saw the show and haven’t stopped listening to it since. Unfortunately the show closed only a few days after I saw it (which made me sad because I definitely would have seen it several more times, as they had $25 student rush tickets), but you can buy the cast album online!

By the end of the first act, I’d fallen in love with not only the music and storyline but the characters of Jerusha and Jervis. Their story, and especially Jerusha’s determination, helped me get through my first few weeks in New York City when I wasn’t entirely sure what I was doing. I highly recommend buying the album and giving the show a listen and you can bet that if I ever find another production of it, I’ll be going…at least twice!
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