Pull Over for CHiPs the Musical
A madcap mélange of mayhem, mirth, and music, CHiPs The Musical continues the Troubadour Theater Company’s long run of hit shows. Hilariously combining pop culture references, singing, and smartly choreographed dance numbers into expanded sketch comedy, CHiPS The Musical is an unqualified success.
Rick Batalla and Henry Phillips’ bare bones story focuses on sexy motorcycle cops Jon (Matt Walker) and Ponch (Batalla) carrying out their duties and handling a new case investigating ecoterrorism, as the force deals a female Sgt. (Michelle Anne Johnson) while their leader Sgt. Getrear (Mike Sulprizio) goes into sensitivity training.
Director Walker keeps action flowing at a breakneck pace, using the plot as a jumping off point for furious adlibbing by the entire company, who seem to be enjoying themselves immensely, whether singing, dancing, juggling, shooting play guns, or trying to break each other up, a la The Carol Burnett Show. The sidesplitting humor brings tears to the eyes of the audience too.
The strong cast is led by the smooth understated playing of Walker and the manic Batalla, as well as the energetic, sexy Christine Lakin as Statch, and the Lucille Ball-esque Beth Kennedy as KG. Joel McCrary as Jim and Jackie Seiden as Frankie possess fine singing voices.
Songs are witty, adult, and clever, choreography snappy, and the visual elements like the tricked up bicycles and the ever changing video background shots are hilarious.
Don’t be tardy, however. Latecomers are serenaded with “You’re So Vain” and told they had missed the first number.
The Troubadour Theater Company presents “CHiPs The Musical” Thursdays through Saturdays at 8 p.m., Saturdays and Sundays at 4 p.m., through July 25 at the Falcon Theatre, 4252 Riverside Dr. in Burbank. Tickets cost $28.50-$31 on Thursdays, and $33.50-$36 Fridays through Sundays. Student tickets cost $26. The show is recommended for ages 16 and up.