♫RAGTIME ♪; Shaw’s Maxwell offers a new take Reply

Review by Danny Gaisin
                Sixteen years ago, Garth Drabinsky staged way up in North York, a big-dollar presentation of the McNally/Flaherty/Ahrens musical about the last century’s first decade. Rumour has it that such an expensive undertaking was what financially killed Livent. The play looks at the turn-of-the-last century era from three different entities: – white, black and immigrant.   Photo courtesy of Emily Cooper

The 3 entities of RAGTIME

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“Why do fools fall in love?” find out @ Stage West Reply

Review by Danny Gaisin
                Remember the ‘Fish’ dance? Playing ‘TWISTER®’? Stereo consoles? Go-go boots?  Doo-Wop? It was the late 50’s 60’s and Lymon & Levy had a hit with ‘Why Do fools fall in love?’ The song and its lyrics are the format for Roger Bean’s latest musical iteration. Unfortunately, if you can recall the above, you might also recollect the “Marvelous Wonderettes” that was the musical showpiece at STAGE WEST a year ago and therein lies the rub!    Photo courtesy of Rob Beintema

Etienne,Pitsiladis,Lawlor & Nason strutting their stuff

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TITANIC, The Musical 3

Review by Sharon Letovsky

Not a musical version of the popular Oscar-winning film; this show is based on real people and events. It launched on Broadway in April 1997, played 830 performances and won four Tony awards.  It has been translated and performed successfully around the world.  That being said, it is not an easy undertaking for any production company, because the show itself has the potential to be a crashing bore! 

 

Almost all of the songs are ballads. There is only one dance number and there is no strong side-story-line to give the tragic disaster more life.  That is why writers of the film added the fictional Jack & Rose.

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“SWEENEY TODD”- a razor-sharp version by Sheridan Reply

Review by Danny Gaisin

Admission: – my favorite revenge tales are Dumas’ “Monte Cristo”; Boorman’s ’67 flic “Point Blank”, & Shakespeare’s “Titus Andronicus”. Sondheim’s SWEENEY TODD with its repetitious lyrics and melodies seems uninspired by comparison. Last night, I witnessed a preview of young director Adam Brazier’s take and my opinion did a180.

 Lovett (Rexhepi) & her rolling pin …Todd (Haidar) & his razor!

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“Drowsy Chaperone”, C.C.M.P. adds a polish & sheen Reply

 The Martin/McKellar book, DROWSY CHAPERONE, musicalized by Lambert and Morrison for the Toronto Fringe is a Cinderella Story; i.e. from humble beginnings to the pinnacle. Mississauga’s CITY CENTRE MUSIC PRODUCTIONS adds another aspect to this decidedly popular bit of fluff…meticulous direction.

               In keeping with the children’s fables motif – CCMP & Michael MacLennan put on a ‘Goldilocks’ effort…it’s “not too anything…it’s Just Right!”

Director MacLennan overseeing his minions!

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“WEST SIDE STORY” @ Ottawa’s N.A.C. 2

Review by Sharon Letovsky

On Tuesday, I had the pleasure of attending the opening night of West Side Story at the National Arts Centre’s main stage – Southam Hall.   The theatre’s 2,323 seats were packed with an audience that was clearly thrilled with the performance.This particular rendering is produced by ‘Broadway Across Canada’ and ‘Broadway Across America’ …

Those JETS can sure dance!

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