I don’t know about you … but I feel that I accomplish so much more, and am in a happier mood, when the daylight hours are longer. Only have one play to “review” for you this time, and it was spectacular!
Wow! A heart touching, musically exciting, and powerfully performed production from start to finish … this one is a must see! Originally written by Tom Eyer (book and lyrics) and Henry Krieger (music), this emotionally gripping megahit just keeps on giving! The debut offering in Doma Theatre’s second year of hit musical productions, following a highly acclaimed roster last year … Co-Visionaries Marco Gomez and Dolf Ramos are pretty fearlessly adventurous! Presenting large scale Broadway styled musicals in an intimate setting (99 seats) with a full scale live orchestra, large casts, and top notch talent, is no easy feat! Dreamgirls is an “up close and personal” look at the rise of Motown in the 1960s … the hopeful R&B acts seeking recognition … and the cutthroat music business dealings of the period. Directed with pulsating passion by Marco Gomez, a dynamic cast of 30 actors/singers captivated us throughout! A smash Broadway Hit, later an award winning film, and currently this equity waiver offering … this powerful and crowd pleasing, heart wrenching story is always captivating. The audience on opening night jumped to their feet, applauding individual performances “mid-song” repeatedly, bursting with unbridled enthusiasm! “Boy Genius,” Musical Director Chris Raymond on piano, and his excellent onstage band, rocked the house! As the unknown singing trio from Chicago, Constance Jewell Lopez as Effie (in an award worthy performance), Jennifer Colby Talton as Deena, and Tyra Dennis as Lorrell, are flawlessly fabulous! As their slick agent Curtis, Welton Thomas Pitchford portrays the heartless “music biz” mogul with perfection, and as the egomaniacal singing star
Jimmy “Thunder” Early … Keith Arthur Bolden is a constant showstopper! Too many in the huge cast to name … but all were wonderful! A brilliant collective effort! Unforgettable moments exploded when Effie sang the popular show’s biggest “hits” … “And I’m Telling You I’m Not Going” and “I Am Changing”! The audience went crazy in appreciation! Now let’s talk about the mood setting “behind the scenes” efforts … All commendable. The countless gorgeous costumes (by Michael Mullen), the classy choreography (by Rae Toledo), wigs/hair (by Aja Morris-Smiley), props (by Hallie Baran), eye popping set (by Amanda Lawson), fantastic lighting (by Johnny Ryman), and sizzling sound (by David Crawford). Kaleidoscopic kudos to all! This is a spectacular and wildly entertaining production, folks … sure to be a monster hit for the innovative Doma Theatre troupe! You really must book seats as soon as possible, as they are already selling tickets like crazy … for the entire run! I hope to see it again myself if they can fit me in! It is truly that good! Running through April 14 at The Met Theatre located at 1089 N. Oxford Ave. in Hollywood. For seats call (323) 802-4990 or go to domatheatre.com.
At the moment, I have no plays to “critique” next weekend, but that can change in a flash … I’ll be back with some sort of “chatter,” no doubt. While I may occasionally run out of time, patience, energy, gasoline, or clean socks … One thing I never run out of is “words!”