This is a particular performance, difficult to pin down into a category: it is a musical, and a contemporary text, it is a parable about life and death, and it is also a concert-show. In short, it is a theatre performance. Complex, novel, incisive, sometimes shocking, but all in all, full of emotion. I think the terrible emotional baggage and the special blend of tragedy and comedy lured me in. And the unexpected mix of sacred music (Bach, Pergolesi, Händel, Karl Jenkins) with pop-rock (Rod Stewart, Beatles, Eric Clapton, Electric Light Orchestra)...
I wanted a dynamic staging, with surprises, energy, humor, but at the same time with powerful images filled with poetry. A poem "tailored' to the sensibilities of today's young audience. I kept the original story of a band singing live, a girl-only band. It is a play with a female-only cast, without being feminist.
Until you enter the auditorium and meet the six girls from the "Our Lady of Perpetual Succour” high school, the title itself seems inedible, unappealing , even. If we have been stern in keeping it, it is because "Fecioarele noastre grabnic ajutătoare" ("Our Lady of Perpetual Succour") is not a marketing trick, but a metaphorical phrase that reflects, ideally, the very message of this text: do not judge a book by its cover, do not be afraid to live your life - with good and bad - and, above all, do not be afraid of Love. It comes when you least expect it, from whom you least expect.
(…) Translation and adaptation meant, first of all, an attempt to not change the structure and the initial meanings. Precisely because of this, I confess, it was quite difficult to find equivalent words in Romanian (that wouldn't sound ridiculous!) for Scottish slang terms. Keeping the expressions and designations - let's call them 'urban-colloquial" - used by the characters may also rise controversies. For two months I have talked with high school students in particular, and I promise I believe this is the exact way they talk to each other m when they are authentic. I am not afraid of potential criticism of prudes and moralists, because it is not a story about how adults want the young to be, but about how they really are.
... The girls sing heavenly. I have seen all the English versions I could find and I have no doubt: our girls sing the best! And it's not small, easy scores, but fragments of difficult scores. (...). Or resistance pieces, close to their ages (...) A lively performance, vibrant, captivating, that seems to end too soon, although in fact lasts for two hours and 20 minutes.
Gabriela Hurezean – Muze și arme – Premieră la Excelsior: ”Fecioarele noastre grabnic ajutătoare”, despre libertate și iubire
It is not the story, decidedly funny, that gives charm to the performance maybe a tad too long or made long, created by Răzvan Mazilu. There is ultimately no significance to the slightly spicy language that can be heard on stage, despite the efforts made by translator Carmen Stanciu to ease the shock that some of the more prude spectators might feel. In light of the craziest night in the life of some teenagers, who suddenly discover that life can be lived differently, the famous law of verisimilitude, about which hundreds, thousands of pages have been written since Aristotle, dictated that Orla, ChelL, Kay, Manda, Kylah and Fionnula talked in a less 'catholic' manner. What matters is the effusive fantasy of the director, and the interpretative quality of the six actresses. They admirably act the prose scenes, they dance, sing, in perfect harmony, in a great performance.
Mircea Murariu – adevarul.ro – Bucuria muzicalului
Go and see the new performance directed by Răzvan Mazilu. Not just because he is the director, not just because it is musical and you will laugh heartily quite a few times. But because it is full of life. Life as it is: full of spectacle. And because... you will accept yourselves as you are. We sometimes judge ourselves too harshly, we slap ourselves in the mirror, we fight life jut because we have prove our strength and all these are in vain at some point in our lives. This is what " Our Ladies of Perpetual Succour" is all about.
Bookhub.ro – „Fecioarele noastre grabnic ajutătoare” (Our Ladies of Perpetual Succour) – spectacolul unei generații
The performance created by Răzvan Mazilu and his artistic team is an explosion of color, remarkable vocal-acting interpretations, exuberance, sound and visual abundance, and not last, brilliance. It is an unconventional ode to youth and friendship, under the motto "carpe Diem" (…)
Alexandru Manea – adpm.ro – Răzvan Mazilu, pionier al musicalului în România. Pune în scenă la Teatrul Excelsior piesa câștigătoare a trofeului Laurence Olivier
Any parent of (pre)teenager should see this show, if they want to be connected to their children's world, who are leaving childhood in different ways - from many points of view - than we did. Because as someone once aptly said, the adolescence of our offspring is first of all about us, about all the emotional burdens we place onto our children's shoulders. Sometimes out of ignorance, other times knowingly, most times out of suffering. Our own suffering, that, because we don’t know how to transcend, we hide or pitch it forward. To our children, in whose name and for whom we do everything. But not what they need.
Daniela Palade Teodorescu – Avantaje – Musicalul „Fecioarele noastre grabnic ajutătoare” a fost pus în scenă de Răzvan Mazilu
... A one-of-a-kind performance. An explosion of color, remarkable vocal-acting interpretations, exuberance, sound and visual abundance, and not last, brilliance. Or at least that is what I saw in the eyes of audience members, who enjoyed this explosion on the stage of Excelsior Theatre
Roxana (Mangîru) Domnica – smarketing.ro – Fecioarele noastre grabnic ajutătoare – spectacolul fenomen al anului!
"Our Ladies of Perpetual Succor" breaks a pattern so used when it comes to performances dedicated to young audiences and tells the story in a language that, no matter how unbelievable, is the real one. Yes, even if the characters are girls, and not some intoxicated boys in a shady club. Maybe it is not a language found in any context, but it is certainly not a utopia. And the show illuminates an aspect not as emphasized, but present every moment, like an omnipresent entity: school. " Our Ladies of Perpetual Succor" teach you that in the absence of a healthy system, of a mentor, you are your only salvation and the one who has to ask the right questions. There is no guiding professor and nothing bohemian like in „Dead Poets Society”.
Oana Bogzaru – yorick.ro – Ce descoperă „Fecioarele noastre grabnic ajutătoare”? Magia tinereții
The actresses go from one attitude to another with disarming ease and dynamism, and with a swift speed are able to transform convincingly (and seductively, not once) in the two hours and a half (because they do not leave the stage), each into five-six characters, managing accents and attitude nuances, temperaments, vocal tonality, musical stylistic register at the same time while changing, in plain sight, an element of the costume. Therefore, before us there is an entire world marching, with the nun in charge from the hometown to the various personalities in the capital's bars, some passages betraying warm lyrical accents or a well handled drama , and shadows of heavy tragedy.
Their stage "presence" subtly incorporates on the one hand the choreography conceived by Răzvan Mazilu to be able to highlight their emotions, in a real register, but with subtle hints towards a dream land and using a wide plane of expression, and on the other hand, a musical component far from "classical libretto"
Mariana Ciolan – Revista Teatrală Radio – Fete/Băieți
... The show has a good pace, an efficient balance between emotion and humor, and is the kind of production (and subject) where even the small bits of clumsiness or awkwardness seem intended.
For the six actresses this is a complex exam on multiple planes: musical, choreographic, acting, but also of synchronization, because we're talking about a show with a multiple character. You are impressed by the blend of aggressiveness, the obstinacy with which these heroines wish to taste life, the sensitivity but also the tendency to mask their lack of experience.
Răzvana Niță – Revista Teatrală Radio – Binecuvântată fii, libertate!
The actresses, who bring onto the stage many more characters, are a revelation for me. I am not good at acting, but I believed them so, I was on their side, I was fascinated by their ease to transform, and to live up to the age they were playing. Each of them has a raw, authentic beauty, unfiltered, with carnival and drama in their eyes and voices. I laughed a lot, but I also cried, in secret.
Cornelilie.ro – 6. De 18, nu din 49
I was not overwhelmed, I was integrated, I was happy to see that it's POSSBILE, man, in our country too - it’s possible to create a GOOD show, from A to Z, it is possible to have beautiful and mega talented actresses on stage.
This MIX of color, and noise, and stories, and hugs, and kisses, and illness, and happiness, and tragedy is possible. It's possible because this is life. You can't judge it forever, but sometimes, you just have to accept it.
Ana Tepșanu – noizz.ro – „Fecioarele noastre grabnic ajutătoare”, spectacolul MUST-SEE al acestei veri