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Best Musical 

Buddy: The Buddy Holly Story

Whether a songbook musical flies or falls has much to do with the songbook, of course (which explains why we don't feel bad never giving that Billy Joel show a chance). Cut down before he had a chance to suck, Holly is the perfect subject for the genre, and John Mueller was perfect as Holly last fall in the American Heartland's rousing tribute, Buddy. Neither showboat nor impersonator, Mueller gave us Holly as a guy making music -- someone lost and brought back to us. Good as he was, the key to the show was the music itself -- true rock and roll, scrappy and loose, at first flickering but then burning down the world. No other musical captured the reckless creation of music, or was anywhere near as much fun.

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