A restless, edgy and frequently thrilling fusion of projections, movement and vocal pyrotechnics, Robert Longbottom's eye-popping, all-new, post-Hollywood production of “Dreamgirls” reinvents this 28-year-old title for an “American Idol” generation.

And with the designers Robin Wagner and Ken Billington finally finding a high-tech way to visually unify this behind-the-music narrative's incessant switching from front to backstage — from bravura public performance to intimate emotional meltdown — Longbottom solves many of the inherent problems in a tricky-to-revive musical that has often been scuppered by its ebullient emotionalism, its florid book and its array of choppy, short scenes.

The only chop here is the sound of a clutch of huge voices nailing notes from thin air and demolishing any residual resistance to the familiarity of this moral fable and, frankly, a sometime lapse in human connection evident in this production.

This, oh weary ladies and gentlemen, is a genuine night out in the Loop. A big, glamorous night out with gorgeous gowns (William Ivey Long outdid himself), diva-like performances and the kind of sizzling, juicy theatrical bacon that leaps from the brightly lit pan right onto your prosaic platter, where you can lick it right up and fortify yourself for Monday.

With this particular title — especially after the movie — you can't overestimate the importance of the show delivering that “One Night Only,” we've-giving-our-all, belt-it-out experience. On Wednesday night, the Caddy Palace nearly became a convertible. It's been a while since we had a tour interrupted by several standing ovations.

“Dreamgirls” is in town for two weeks only. Lord knows why. This tour could have sat in Chicago for months. It's the hometown both of the incomparably talented and physically daring Chester Gregory, who (as James “Thunder” Early) channels his own brilliantly quixotic remix of James Brown and Prince, and the fictional Deena Jones and the Dreams — who were not, the creators always insisted, thinly veiled versions of Diana Ross and the Supremes.

Whatever. This is the kind of seamlessly conceived and superbly danced revival that could only have been created by a single director-choreographer. And aside from the remarkable achievement of making you feel like “Dreamgirls” was written yesterday, Longbottom clearly understands that this title was always, in essence, a non-stop concert with telegraphed conflicts and redemptions, and easy-to-digest emotional overlays. It almost plays here as a pop operetta, and if you've seen “Dreamgirls” on previous ragtag outings, you'll understand the huge scale of that accomplishment.

The production's Achilles' heel comes late in the first act, when the fortunes of Effie (played by the huge-voiced and wholly committed Moya Angela) and the trajectory of the show make a 180-degree turn. Effie's anguish, and subsequent exile from the girl group she once led, is a consequence of a sudden personal and professional betrayal by group manager Curtis Taylor Jr. (Chaz Lamar Shepherd).

In this show, you never see the danger, the moment or, really, the full consequence of that betrayal. That's because Angela is mostly in her own world.

It's an exciting world to experience, especially during the signature “And I Am Telling You I'm Not Going.” I could have spent another hour or two in its blisteringly powerful company. But it's still an island. Rather like “American Idol.”

That's not the only spot when key emotional moments are missed, and Angela is by no means the only performer to lack palpable vulnerability. The shimmering Syesha Mercado (who plays Deena) and the earnest Adrienne Warren (who plays Lorrell) find it at times.

At others, these and other actors are trying to get there, but the show's can't-wait concept has already moved on to the next scene. Those exciting digital panels are moving and no heart or mind can wait.

In many shows, this pervasive sense of inner isolation would torpedo the night. But while one wishes they'd fix some of the missed human connections here — I think they could and I think doing so could eventually get them to Broadway — it by no means spoils a genuinely spectacular night.

That's partly because this is a show about the music industry, which is not exactly known for the warm hearts of its leaders.

It's partly because it works on a meta-level, foregrounding the racial subtext of success and failure in the 1960s and 1970s and reminding us of the show's main theme of isolation versus community. It's partly because when you have singing like this, you have a show.

But it's mostly because this is isn't some small-town story that one wants to protect from exploitation. It's “Dreamgirls,” a show entirely about exploitation and a world where the power ballad is invariably bigger and more available than the person singing it.

So it is here. So it is in the real world