Most people have probably seen the movie You Got Mail at least once, I myself belong to those who have seen it a number of times because it is romcom at its best. What many probably do not know is that it is based on one based on the Hungarian play Parfumerie and the same play is the basis for this musical which was first staged on Broadway in 1963 and which has now had its Scandinavian premiere in Jönköping. The plot is set in Budapest in the 1930s in a perfumery where George Nowack (Kalle Malmberg). One day, Amalia Balasch (Linda Olsson) enters the store and looks for a job. What they both do not know about is that for some time now they have been anonymous pen pals via a personal ad in a newspaper. But now that they are unconsciously meeting in reality, it is not as obvious that they have feelings for each other. A cozy intricate musical with several different couples involved, infidelity and misunderstandings that are sorted out during the journey.
Linda Olsson with her wonderful voice together with a comic accuracy in the lines creates a modern Amalia. Kalle Malmberg is charming as on the surface very confident George Nowack, but inside he is tamped with his feelings for Amalia The interplay between them builds the tension to the liberating kiss that gives the audience a warm feeling of well-being and a smile on their face, just like a good rom-com boards. In these times, it is so nice to believe that love and kindness will win. To balance feelgood and to get some drama, there is of course a slick cunning salesman in the store, Steven Kodlay, who Jonasl Eskil Brehmer plays fantastically well. The ensemble is very good and the director and choreographer Roine Söderlundh has made full use of all the actors on stage.
The set designer Frida Arvidsson has created a wonderful perfumery with many fine details and together with Camilla Thulin’s incomparably fine and colorful dresses and coats, we go back to the 1930s, a time with elegant dresses, hats and stylish costumes. The music in this musical does not contain any songs that you immediately go and hum along afterwards, but it is always a joy to listen when the music is performed by Jönköping’s Sinfonietta and by talented musical artists.
After a long time without a musical and now that the darkness of autumn descends upon us, this is a musical that is a delight to the ear and the eye and gives warmth, hope and love. A feelgood musical that you must not miss.
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