The standouts are Josh Sticklin as Berger, the self-absorbed leader of the tribe, and Paul Scanlan as Berger’s pal Claude, who wishes he were a blue-collar Brit (in the song “Manchester”) and can’t decide whether to burn his draft card or just report for duty. These two are the show’s tentpoles, but they get great vocal and physical backup from Ian Anthony Coleman as Hud, who heartily blasts through African American stereotypes in “Colored Spade” and “Abie Baby.”
Dani Stoller does delicate work as Jeanie, who’s pregnant by some guy and hopelessly in love with Claude. She aces the disarming ditty “Air,” about pollution, while wearing a gas mask. Caroline Wolfson (Sheila) offers fine emotional truth as Berger’s oft-spurned lover…
From the moment Ines Nassara as Ronny lends her gorgeous alto to the opening anthem “Aquarius,” the show is off and running. Key characters soon emerge from among the scraggly youth.”
Keegan has cultivated a knack for reviving Broadway musicals of a certain anti-bourgeois edge, such as “Rent,” “Spring Awakening,” “Cabaret,” “The Full Monty” and now “Hair.” It doesn’t exactly reinvent or re-imagine them, but it tries, often quite successfully, to reproduce them in an up-close way that’s hard to achieve on Broadway or at the Kennedy Center. It’s a niche, and Keegan fills it.