REVIEW: ‘The Cher Show’ Inspires and Dazzles

There are few superstars who are as deeply bonded to the LGBTQ community as Cher- and specific to GLAAD, she’s been working with us for years to help accelerate acceptance. She was honored with the Vanguard Award in 1998 for her allyship, and she presented the Stephen F. Kolzak Award to her son Chaz in 2012.  So, when given the opportunity to see the new Broadway musical based on her life, I jumped at the chance...and you should too!

The glistening, over the top, 2 ½ hour spectacle now showing at the Neil Simon Theatre has some definite queer references (more on that later…) but more than anything, the show is both uplifting and inspiring (we all need more of that these days!) as we learn that the larger-than-life diva we all recognize today was once a shy, awkward girl trying to find her place in the world.

In a situation that many of us can relate to, we see young Cherilyn Sarkisian (aka Cher) having a tough time fitting in.  The kids at school make fun of her for her looks, especially because she is “darker” than most of them.  Her mother, Georgia (played by Emily Skinner) reassures her “You’re not a freak.”

A lot of the dialogue in the show speaks directly to Cher’s queer fan base- at one point she addresses the crowd as, “Ladies and gentlemen—and flamboyant gentlemen!”  The show has A LOT…I mean A LOT of guy candy- the company of male dancers are always dressed to show off their impressive physiques.  But perhaps taking the cake for the show’s most “fabulous” moment is the Bob Mackie fashion show number where we are taken on a walk down iconic-Cher-fashion-moment memory lane!  And yes even one of the male dancers dresses in one of her most risqué, body-baring ensembles.

I was thrilled to see that the show only referred to Chaz with he/him pronouns and the name he uses today.

WATCH: Cher On The First Gay Men She Ever Met

By now, you’ve probably heard that there are three actresses who play Cher at varying points in her life.  Micaela Diamond plays timid and insecure, Babe; Teal Wicks is the spitfire finding her voice, Lady; and Stephanie J. Block sparkles as Star, the icon who will always be ready to re-invent herself.  Without giving away too much, you will be surprised to see how much these actresses get to work TOGETHER on stage.

The production which is directed by Jason Moore and choreographed by Christopher Gattelli, does an impressive job at working in Cher’s smash hits into the big moments of her life.  For example we hear the actors sing lines of her 1998 comeback smash “Believe” decades earlier when she is just starting to get her footing.  All of her hits from the past six decades are included.  Expect to be lip-synching along to “Half Breed,” “If I Could Turn Back Time,” “Strong Enough,” Heart Of Stone,” “I Got You Babe” and even a big finale that includes “A Woman’s World” and “Take Me Home.”

Tickets for "The Cher Show" are available now.