When you've got a show like Jacques Brel is Alive & Well & Living in Paris where performers can simply be themselves and develop a personal relationship with each audience I can't imagine why someone would choose to throw up a fourth wall* and try to impose characters and a narrative. But that's what's happened with this Circuit Playhouse production and I've got mixed feelings about it. When it's good it's very good. When it's bad it's usually the result of trying to make something very simple harder than it has to be.
*Yes, there can be a functional fourth wall even with audience members seated onstage.