If a single voice, or a single performance, could send a Broadway musical soaring to greatness, “Tina: The Tina Turner Musical” would handily qualify as one of the best musicals to emerge in recent years. Playing the title role, Adrienne Warren, who is blessedly onstage for virtually the whole duration, gives a performance that marries electrifying vocalism, a powerful dynamism and affecting emotional agility. Warren, who created the role in the musical’s West End premiere, is simply incandescent.
Unfortunately even a transcendent performance cannot lift a mediocre musical to stratospheric heights — or at least it can do so only intermittently. When Warren’s Tina fully takes over the stage, legs kicking like pistons, sultry voice riding the currents of a series of surging pop and rock hits, “Tina” touches on the sublime. But these moments are too rare in what is essentially another middling jukebox bio-musical, of the recently booming diva subdivision.