I was offered complimentary tickets to go see Edward Scissorhands at work the other day. I jumped on the opportunity because a) Free shit gets me through the day and b) Edward Scissorhands anything could be sweet. So I replied to the email as quickly as possible, figuring I was going to see one of three things: Edward Scissorhands: The Musical, Edward Scissorhands: The Ice Show, or Edward Scissorhands: The Ballet. After getting the tix and searching online for the production, I figured out that it was the ballet.
Ok—this is ok. My girlfriend used to do ballet, and free tickets are free tickets. Besides, the main character has scissor-hands, so it can’t be terrible—and I’ve never been to the Fifth Avenue Theatre before, so I get to do that.
We pick up the tickets sans ID which I feel is a bad sign (ain’t nobody stealing tickets to this show), and get to our free seats. They are nice balcony seats, and it is when I see the translucent “Edward Scissorhands” backdrop onstage, in “Tim Burton Font” that I decide I am pumped.
And it’s a good thing I was because two hours later, I was extremely pleased with my decision to attend. This was no “Never-Mind: The Nirvana Interpretive Dance.” This was ballet—or, as my benefactor (donator? Whatever, I want a benefactor goddammit) informed us, Modern Dance Theatre. I like that description. They danced. They were modern. I was at the theatre. Perfect.
Well, it turns out that Modern Dance Theatre has severe issues with conflict and resolution. The performance rarely introduced conflict without solving said conflict through a series of spins and twirls almost immediately. Example: Edward just pissed off EVERYONE and alienated girl he loves. MOMENTS LATER IN A CEMETERY: Edward is sad; he dances and wilts; Girl loves him and is ready to party. There is no explanation as to WHY this change of heart occurred, but we’re all pretty glad it did.
There were definitely some moments when the theatre part was outweighed by the dance part. Twice during the performance, dances involving plot devolved into extended group dance sequences, where Edward was barely present. They reminded me why I got bored at dance/musicals, but the stage design was amazing enough to capture my attention and keep me entertained. I would say see this production, if only for the stage design. Amazing. And Edward trims a hedge onstage. Awesome.
We were left with two questions that I don’t know the real answers to at the conclusion of the play:
1) From Girlfriend: “Why did the man think it was a good idea to create a boy with scissorhands?” GREAT QUESTION! In the production, the man’s boy died when he was little and also thoroughly enjoyed scissors. Years later, the man appeared to have found a way to animate a constructed body, and in honor of his child, give him scissors for hands. Now, I liked baseball and soccer as a kid, but I would not want my Scientist Father to animate a creature with my namesake and give it cleats and a catcher’s mitt in place of feet and hands. “Then what would you want??” I can hear you asking. The answer is obvious—I loved nerf weapons. I would require a nerf cannon on one hand, and a nerf bow and arrow on the other. My feet would be detachable Nerf Whistle Footballs, so I was always ready for a pickup game. Ultimately, my weapons would be useless, but I can imagine so many times it would be hilarious and comforting to shoot someone who is annoying me in the head with a nerf arrow and then see how they react (you can’t yell at the guy with nerf weapons for hands. He’s not REALLY doing any harm).
2) From Me: “How did the townspeople know that his name was Edward?” They put up “Welcome Edward” signs and “Edwardo’s Salon” signs, but how the hell do they know his name? He doesn’t talk, he dances. So I can only assume that there is a morse code of dance that I am not aware of. My program should have included the keystone for this language of dance.
Overall, the show was great and I’m glad I went. Edward Scissorhands is cool in any format, and the music, stage design, and performance itself was worth the time. Also, it was free. Check it out if it’s in your area.
Witz DOES NOT PICK Scissors For Hands,