Thursday, December 18, 2014

          Christmas Comes to Detroit Louie
               Windsor Gardens’ Theatre Company: 12/4 – 12/7
L-R: Judy Flomberg, Lynn Nicholson and Barbara Thomas

Written by Bobby Wood and directed by Pamela Clifton, The Windsor Gardens’ Theatre Company’s production of “Christmas Comes to Detroit Louie,” is a magical show that puts one in mind of holiday favorites such as ”It’s a Wonderful Life.”
      The seniors who make up The Windsor Garden’s Theatre Company are proving it’s never too late to learn a new skill and embrace theatre arts.
     Led by instructor Pamela Clifton, these fun-loving folks find that belonging to Windsor Gardens’ Community Theatre Drama Club is “an excellent opportunity to learn and practice acting techniques culminating in staged performance open to the public.”
      The show stars Lynn Nicholson as a small time gangsta named Detroit Louie. This artist, who recently appeared as the detective in Vintage Theatre’s “Harold and Maude,” brings enthusiastic humor to the role.
     Nicholson also designed and built the set.
     Eva Crawford plays Louie’s sidekick, Harry the Lift. This actor brings lots of laughs as she pilfers purses nearly completely unobserved.
     There are two angels who preside over the goings on in the waiting room below.
     Judy Flomberg is hilarious as Angel #1. Barbara Thomas is Angel #2. These two actors communicate a sense of fun that’s infectious.
     Marilyn Tyler portrays Julie, a 12-year-old blind girl who’s looking for a Christmas healing miracle.
      Richard Love plays Mr. Varner, the 80 year old father of Joan (Jeanne Amen)   and Cara(Rebecca Stefanski). Things look pretty bleak for Varner since his two daughters are trying to leave him alone during the holidays at a home for the elderly. He needs a miracle, too.
     If you missed “Detroit Louie” plan to attend the next Windsor Gardens’ Theatre Company show playing March 5 though 8, 2015. They’ll be reviving the wacky “Twinkle, Twinkle Little Twinkie,” a Windsor Gardens favorite that was first staged in 2002.  Marlowe's Musings



Saturday, December 6, 2014

Miss Saigon
Vintage Theatre: 12/5 – 2/1
 
                      Rob Riney and Regina Fernandez Steffen
                               
       Under the astute direction of Rebecca Joseph “Miss Saigon” explodes across the stage at Vintage Theatre with powerful performances!
     The musical by Claude-Michel Schonberg, Alain Boublil and Richard Maltby based upon Puccini’s opera, “Madame Butterfly” tells the tragic love story of a Vietnamese woman and an American GI.
     Regina Fernandez Steffen stuns with her passionately acted and sung portrayal of Kim.    Rob Riney delivers vocals that are superb as her paramour Chris. Their love duets “ The Last Night of the World” and “Sun and Moon” are sublime.
     Arlene Rapal’s performance in the role of the Engineer, normally portrayed by a male actor, is extraordinary. Her delivery of the show stopping number “The American Dream” is electrifying!
     Keegan Flaugh portrays Chris’s buddy, John with great heart. This actor’s singing of “Bui Doi” at the top of Act Two, supported by the male ensemble, is soul shattering.     
     Chachi Martin’s fiery portrayal of Thuy, the fiancĂ©e Kim’s father had “arranged” for her as a child, is riveting.
     Hao Liu adds immeasurably to the performance of Stephanie Lynn Prugh’s choreography for the “The Morning of the Dragon” with his utterly deft martial arts moves.
     This production’s concentration on the intimacy of the story creates an evening of theatre that exceeds expectations.

The tragic tale of a doomed romance between a Vietnamese woman and an American G.I.
Dec. 5, 2014 – Feb 1, 2015
Fri/Sat at 7:30 p.m.; Sun at 2:30 p.m.; Sat. Jan.11 and 31 at 2:30 p.m.;
Monday, December 15 @ 7:30 p.m.; Thursday, January 29 at 7:30 p.m.
$31($26 advance)
303-856-7830 or online at www.vintagetheatre.com
Vintage Theatre, 1468 Dayton St., Aurora 80010 

Marlowe's Musings

* Please note date change.

Friday, December 5, 2014

She Loves Me
The Arvada Center for the Arts and Humanities: 11/25 – 12/21
     Gavin Mayer has directed what may well be the most delightful musical theatre confection of this holiday season.
     “She Loves Me” is a musical comedy that endears as it entertains.
     It’s the perfect holiday fare!
                                       Julia Jackson and Andrew Russell
                                               Photo credit: P Switzer Photography 2014
     Julia Jackson is smashing as Amalia. This lovely actor is utterly delicious in her acting and singing of such memorable numbers as “Will He Like Me?” and “Dear Friend.” For her performance alone you should run to buy a ticket.
     Andrew Russell is a great Georg. His singing of  “Tonight at Eight” and “She Loves Me” are most memorable.
     Mark Rubald’s musical trip down memory lane singing “In Days Gone By” is charming.
     Rob Costigan is terrific as Ladislav Sipos, the company man in the parfumerie, whose main concern is that everyone perform in such a manner that all remain forever employed.
     Steven Day’s got the plum role! As a super fastidious waiter he does gloriously funny battle with a hilariously klutzy busboy (Tim Howard) trying to keep up the reputation of his Budapest restaurant having “A Romantic Atmosphere.”
     Brian Mallgrave’s set is eye-popping, David Nehls’ music direction superb and Kitty Skillman Hilsabeck’s choreography top-notch! Liz Jasperse’s costumes are stunning , and Vance McKenzie does a great job illuminating the proceedings with his lighting design.
     Ms. Hilsabeck’s choreography of “A Romantic Atmosphere,” the scene showcasing the comic work of Mr. Day and Mr. Howard is breathtaking!
      The singing of “Twelve Days to Christmas” by the ensemble will put you in the holiday mood in short order.
     The book by Joe Masteroff, Music by Jerry Bock and Lyrics by Sheldon Harnick are all gems!


For tickets go to Arvadacenter.org or call the Box Office at 

720-898-7200Marlowe's Musings

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Forbidden Broadway:Alive and Kicking!
The Garner Galleria: 11/15 - 3/1
L-R: Sarah Rex, Jordan Leigh, Chad T. Reagan and Lauren Shealy. Photo by Terry Shapiro.

     “Forbidden Broadway” is the most uproariously funny 
evening of theatre in the history of the world. You won’t even think this an exaggeration when your suspenders pop and your knickers split from laughing at these parodies that are so sensationally well written, acted and sung!
     It’s an all night, non-stop send-up of everything sacred – and not so sacred - In the American musical theatre. From "Les Mis" to "Annie" to "The Book of Mormon,"everything's fair game.
     The gags and jokes go by so fast it’s impossible to ‘get’ em all. It’s the fastest paced show in musical history. (One might say it’s the Indianapolis 500 of musical theatre.)So you – like this reviewer- will just have to see it again! It’s the kind of show that will undoubtedly bring back the record-breaking longevity of shows such as “Always Patsy Cline” and “I Love You! You’re Perfect! Now Change!”
     Martha Yordy provides a sensational musical accompaniment that’s flawless in evoking the musical memories of everything from Rodgers and Hammerstein to Sondheim and Lloyd Webber.
     The show has been cast with outstanding actors from our phenomenal local talent pool.
     Jordan Leigh, who stunned Denver for four solid years in “Love! Perfect! Change!” is back with his outrageously expressive comedic presence. 
     It’s hard to believe but Sarah Rex’s vocal chords and comic timing get an even greater workout than they did in her recent portrayal of the Lady of the Lake in Spamalot! 
     Lauren Shealy, who has performed off Broadway and in national tours of musicals such as "South Pacific" (Nellie) stuns. 
     Chad T. Reagan brings a classically trained voice as well as a command of the comic shtick in such Gilbert and Sullivan operettas as “The Pirates of Penzance.”
     In brief what we are given here is an ensemble of triple threat talents that will work your funny bone til you cry “Uncle!”
     Alvin Colt’s costume design and Carol Sherry’s wig design are both stunning!
     Even though you can take your adult beverage into the theatre people may think you stopped by your local pot shop on the way to the theatre since you’ll be giggling so uncontrollably.
     Trust me! You’re gonna lose it completely! Get over yourself acting cool, calm and collected at the theatre.  All sense of decorum will be a thing of the past as you gasp and guffaw your way through the antics of these four consummate comedic talents. You’ll laugh til they have to drag you out for more oxygen.
     The direction and choreography by William Selby is Magnificent! “Please sir,  I want some more.”

For tickets call 303-893-4000 or go online to denvercenter.orgMarlowe's Musings







Thursday, November 27, 2014

“Songs For a New World”
Miners Alley Playhouse: 11/14 – 12/21

     It’s ‘a New World’ at Miners Alley Playhouse in Golden. 
The addition of new projectors has allowed for spectacular visuals of everything from celestial vistas to urban landscapes.
      Jonathan Scott-McKean is the genius wielding the technical wizardry requisite for this breathtaking step into the future. McKean also designed the cookie cutter set design that allows Mitch Samu and his glorious band to be installed onstage.
     Karalyn “Star” Pytel provides the very fine lighting design.
     The four person cast is superb.

     Jacquie Jo Billings soars through the solos of Woman 1 with soulful tenderness and heart felt passion.
          L-R: Kristen Samu and Jacquie Jo Billings

Kristen Samu gets both of the humorous entries as Woman 2. The dark humor in  “Just One Step” involves a woman kvetching about her husband as she contemplates jumping off a skyscraper. The tempo of the patter may remind you of “Another Hundred People” from Sondheim’s “Company.” In her hilarious “Surabaya Santa” a disenchanted Mrs. Claus, leaves the Jolly Old Elf because she is always left alone at Christmas.
     Rory Pierce delivers strong vocals as Man 2. His passionate rendition of “The World was Dancing” showcases this artist’s talent and brings back memories of his sensational work as El Gallo in “The Fantasticks.”
     In his Miners Alley debut, Matt Kok (Man 1) unleashes a distinctive voice that sometimes puts one in mind of that of Mandy Patinkin. It is to be hoped that this artist will be seen again soon upon the Colorado stage.
     The songs and lyrics by Jason Robert Brown (“The Last Five Years” and “Parade”) run the gamut from tender to passionate to downright hilarious. They give us musical glimpses of what people do when Life starts to feel like you just hit the wall.
     Brenda Billings directs the proceedings with a transparent, sensitive touch.Marlowe's Musings

Miners Alley Playhouse presents
“Songs For A New World”
Nov. 14* - Dec. 21
(*Note date change from Nov. 7)
Fri./ Sat. @ 7:30.p.m.; Thurs., Dec 4, 11 &18 at 7:30 p.m.;
Sun., Nov. 16 & Dec 7 @ 6 p.m.; Sun., Nov. 30, Dec. 14 & 21@ 2:00 p.m.
$26
Miners Alley Playhouse, 1224 Washington Avenue, Golden, CO 80401
303-935-3044 or online at minersalley.com