Thursday, January 1, 2009

Reviews: Mark Baratelli as King Herod

(3-9-09: Mark Baratelli sings "King Herod's Song" in TN)

Name: Mark Baratelli
Role: King Herod (Photos | Video)
Production: National Tour of Jesus Christ Superstar (Website)
Dates: November 2008 through May 3, 2009

4/9/2009: Improv actor offers comic relief in 'Jesus Christ: Superstar'


"And in his one moment of brilliance, Norris has Mark Baratelli play Herod like a fey send-up of the Jewish King, fawned over and fawning, eliciting enough laughter to set up a great contrast with the crucifixion scene."
-Jim Rutter, Edge Philadelphia, Feb 4, 2009

"Special praise must be given to Mark Baratelli’s fabulous comic turn as King Herod. He takes the role to another level with a deliciously timed mix of nonchalance and flamboyance, supported by a group of women from Herod’s household."
-Steven McKnight,, March 19, 2009

"'Herod's Song' always serves as the brief comic relief from the drama, but Mark Baratelli, who performed this version, made it fresh. Baratelli turned Herod into an inebriated diva who delivered little barbs between vocals, such as "move please" as he elbowed his way through his harem between verses."
-Stephanie Merry, Washington Post, March 19, 2009

"You might have seen his 'show-saving star turn' as King Herod..."
-Seth Kubersky, Orlando Weekly, July 8, 2009

"Mark Baratelli made Herod’s comical scene the show’s liveliest and most colorful production number..."
-Andrew S. Hughes, South Bend Tribune, Feb 12, 2009

"Another performer of note was Mark Baratelli, who brought to life King Herod in a most interesting and entertaining way. He had the house in hysterics during "King Herod's Song." It was a fresh new twist to the tune and was truly delightful." (If you click through to the review the reviewer uses the name of the actor who played Pilate in this production instead of mine)
-Scott Novak, Niles Daily Star, February 14, 2009

"thinks King Herod stole the show"
-Charles Jensen, @chasjens, Twitter status update, March 18, 2009

"In the touring show, the stand out was Herod, whose role affords him the most latitude in performance. This show's Herod sang a Calypso version of his solo, with four Carmen Miranda-like back up singers. My only reservation is that the actor played Herod as a kind of mincing bitchy queen--and the last thing the gays need right now is to be connected to the crucifixion of Jesus, if you ask me. But he was funny, and he incorporated the most anachronism into his brief moment on stage, combining a divaness with the kind of critcal rancor usually reserved for restaurant reviews and NPR film reviews."
-Charles Jensen, Kinema Poetics, March 19, 2009

"Mark Baratelli's over-the-top Herod was a show-stopper"
-Ancourage Daily News, Dec 10, 2008

"...Mark Baratelli, whose flamboyant King Herod provided the otherwise melodramatic production with some much-needed and well-delivered comic relief."
-Matt Fountain, Mustang Daily, January 7, 2009

"Mark Baratelli stole the only scene he was in as a feminine King Herod."
-Jeff Korbelik, Lincoln Journal Star, January 25, 2009

"Mark Baratelli provides the comic relief as King Herod, floating like a butterfly, and sounding much like Butterfly McQueen."
>-Peter Filichia, The Star-Ledger, April 10, 2009

"But even more offensive than Mark Baratelli's over-the-top swishery is his utter disconnection from the story: This Herod shows no interest in Jesus' miraculous abilities, just in ad libbing and pulling focus to himself. It's a disgraceful performance in an execrable bit of staging."
-Variety, Dec 17, 2008

"And Mark Baratelli’s King Herod, who seemed to be played more to the audience than to Jesus? Oh, dear. His “King Herod’s Song” was zapped of all its sly humor and relevance to the story. One wonders if Baratelli knew what play he was in."
-Arizona Daily Star, Dec 31, 2008

"Only Mark Bartelli disappoints with a strangely uneven rendition of "King Herod's Song.", Brad Hathaway, March 12, 2009

"Although this juxtaposition is the appeal of the show, it was jarring at times, especially the quick back-and-forth between the modern rock ‘n’ roll bits and the more serious religious aspect. This was especially true of musical numbers such as “King Herod’s Song” during the trial of Jesus, where King Herod (Mark Baratelli) is portrayed as something akin to one of the “Queer Eye for a Straight Guy” cast.", Laura McKenzie, Mar 18 2009

"And heaven help us, but what was director Dalett Norris thinking when he staged "Herod's Song"? Having Mark Baratelli play Herod as a swishbuckler is one thing, but adding a bevy of bossa nova-costumed screamers and camping up the number so much he completely loses the song, destroys what should have been one of the shows most entertaining moments."
-Eric E. Harrison, ArkansasOnline, April 21, 2009

(Ted Neeley, Mark Baratelli)
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