This show was an extremely well-known musical that depends almost entirely on the physical stature of the characters and their relationships to the other characters' sizes, their voice qualities, and their acting abilities. All of the positives of the costumes, sets and special effects couldn't make up what was lacking by the actors themselves.
True, I cannot help comparing their performances to other performances I have seen of this show. And I have seen plenty. I have seen this show done on Broadway, by professional Broadway touring companies, by renown regional theater companies, very good High School and College productions, and even by a local dance company. I have seen it done by casts of 50+ and even by a cast of less than 20. I have seen it done on large stages with all the bells and whistles and even in the round on a tiny stage with no scenery at all. The most successful productions had one thing in common --- ENERGY!
Performance energy is contagious! It feeds the audience and then the audience' energy feeds the actors in a continual round. The troubles in last night's show could have been forgiven had the lead actors exuded more energy. Some of the dancers and secondary characters put out a lot more energy when they came onto the stage than the lead actors did. They were a delight while the audience had trouble believing in the lead characters.
A great performance must have ENERGY!