"[Barrett's] Rose (monstrous though the character is), coupled with the initially timorous twosome of the untalented Louise and the human doormat that is Herbie, all somehow manage to make us root for them against all odds, and despite their flaws. Was there ever such a trio of difficult and demanding roles? And all three nail them."Lyric Stage's "Gypsy": How Gypsy Rose —South Shore Critic
"Maybe the best part of the production was the Burlesque House number, “You Gotta Have a Gimmick,” featuring strippers Tessie Tura, Mazeppa, and Electra in their horrible and wonderful garb. Actress Kathy St. George, playing Mazeppa, hit every beat on the nose and had the audience roaring."“Gypsy” in fine form at Lyric Stage —The Raider Times
"Brady Miller’s dance prowess is particularly graceful and energetic, and Anderson-Song, a natural for the stage, is perfect as Baby June. Barrett’s rich voice fills the theater as forcefully as Mama Rose’s outsized personality. Salpini’s performance almost sneaks up on the audience; she skillfully enlivens the script’s gradual reveal of Louise as more than a long-suffering second banana. She’s resourceful, strong, and ultimately self-possessed."Leigh Barrett Excels As Mama Rose, The Stage Mom From Hell, In Lyric Stage's 'Gypsy' —WBUR The ARTery
"As a splendid artifact of the so-called Golden Age of the Broadway musical, “Gypsy’’ allows us to savor the craftsmanship that went into the best shows of that era while also evoking, through its story, the fading twilight of the vaudeville era."Leigh Barrett offers a thorny and memorable Rose in Lyric Stage’s ‘Gypsy’ —The Boston Globe
"Rachel directs, choreographs and blocks this talented cast excellently."“GYPSY” at Lyric Stage —The Theater Mirror
"Steven Barkhimer does a marvelous job as Herbie, the sympathetic booking agent who falls madly in love with Rose. He gives the role great depth with his acting prowess."
"Kira Troilo is splendid as Dainty June. Her marvelous voice and dancing skills are observed as she dances up a storm with the boys."
"Janie E. Howland's designs, notably her decaying proscenium that frames the stage and her use of curtains, are a model for small productions such as this one - handsome to the eye and nicely scaled to the production's demands. It is augmented by Franklin Meissner, Jr.'s often shadowy lighting and Rafael Jaen's droll period costumes. The able musical direction by Dan Rodriguez captures the score's brassy edge with a small backstage band that sounds twice its size."Gypsy —EDGE Media Network
"Spiro has found a great Gypsy, with Barrett, Salpini, Troilo, Barkhimer, and company lighting up the Lyric Stage. If you miss this production you are making a huge mistake."The Lyric Stage Finds Its Gypsy —Boxing Over Broadway
"Accept this gift from this wonderful man. He knows how to Light the Lights!"
"Barrett fully embraces the part with a powerful performance. she’s got what it takes."
"Ms Bertone gets it all just right in this scaled down but amazing production of what has been called the greatest of all Broadway musicals."
"Seeing this in the intimacy of the Lyric Stage Theatre brings us close not only physically but emotionally to the story."
There are some words and phrases that suffer from overuse in theater reviews, diminishing their impact, and sometimes achieving the boy-who-cried-wolf status. Think of the musicals casually referred to as iconic, the performances hyped as tour de force, and the productions loudly labeled as MUST SEE. As much as a critic may enjoy many shows, these terms ought to be carefully rationed, or else run the risk of failing to generate the excitement deserved by that one truly outstanding production. Friends, let me proclaim, without hyperbole, that the Lyric Stage Company has hit the trifecta with their season opening iconic musical Gypsy, a virtual must see production, thanks to Rachel Bertone's direction and choreography, and Leigh Barrett's tour de force performance as Mama Rose.GYPSY Takes Off at Lyric Stage —Broadway World
"Now premier Hub actress Leigh Barrett is giving a powerhouse Lyric Stage Company of Boston performance in the part worthy of comparison with those of the likes of Angela Lansbury, Tyne Daly and Patti Lupone. At the same time, gifted director-choreographer Rachel Bertone ('The Wild Party," "Barnum," among others) is giving one of America's greatest musicals the kind of inspired revival it deserves."A luminous Gypsy —MySouthEnd.com
"Brady Miller demonstrates Tulsa's singular dancing talent on 'All I Need Is the Girl" while Kirsten Salpini makes Louise's unrequited crush on him very clear. Salpini is rivetingly vulnerable on the touching solo "Little Lamb," and Troilo and Salpini are fully convincing as siblings-especially on the insightful duet "If Momma Was Married." Barrett and Steven Barkhimer as Mama Rose's group agent and candy salesman boyfriend Herbie do well with the ups and down of their relationship. Barkhimer's understated singing fits Herbie's more reserved responses with highly extroverted Mama Rose. Barrett, Barkhimer and Salpini have the feel of a real family unit on a very winning rendition of "Together, Wherever We Go." Shannon Lee Jones as Tessie Tura smartly combines insightful attitude and good-natured mentoring with novice burlesque performer Louise. Kathy St. George is a hoot as a deep-voiced horn-touting Mazeppa."
"The beauty of theater is how it so powerfully reflects our humanity in all of its strengths and weaknesses. Our job is to hold that mirror up so that the audience might learn something about their own journey through life."Here Comes Gypsy...And Here Comes Director/Choreographer Rachel Bertone —HuffPost
It goes without saying that Rose’s complexities are what make her one of the most coveted roles for actresses of a certain age. But Rose’s strength is what can also make her a difficult pill for audiences to swallow: She’s loud, she’s direct, and she’s driven, but if her vulnerabilities don’t shine through, the show loses its soul; it’s the right mix of domination and torment that make for a home run. But it’s not easy.Mama's Gonna Show It To You —digboston
The challenge, says Barrett, is making sure she builds a character towards a performance worthy of the show.In 'Gypsy,' Leigh Barrett relishes playing a Rose with thorns —The Boston Globe
"I think 'Gypsy' is a masterpiece," says Barrett. "There really was no strong female character before her, and the story takes us through an extraordinary psychological exploration."
Not to mention some impressive vocal work.