Sunday, July 02, 2006

42nd Street

Broadway Rose Theatre Co.
July 2, 2006; closes July 16, 2006

Much to like about this exuberant musical-comedy classic. Typical flimsy book, but nearly every song’s a familiar showstopper. Amy Palomino, Tim Falter were whiz-bang fresh, triple-threat talents. Late-bloomer Joe Theissen’s title-song reprise was wowza. Good orchestra kept step with abundant, well-executed choreography (though some tapping was slightly less than staccato).

22 comments:

QK said...

Fun, cute, energetic. I felt like it was good...but not outstanding. The singing was very strong all around and the dancing looked fine, but sometimes the price to pay for good singing and dancing is lackluster acting. For such a dance-based show I was somewhat disappointed by the choreography which just felt bland to me. I can tell this was a cast of good dancers, so I really would have liked to see their talents showcased better. And why were there songs missing? Where was 'I Only Have Eyes For You' or 'Sunny Side to Every Situation'? Also, heads up actors, I believe I heard some shuffling tap shoes and some whispering from off stage.

Anonymous said...

Stellar show. Sure, I was disappointed not to hear some familiar songs in the show, but I can see the pragmatism in the cuts, and who's to say the show was impeccably constructed to begin with? Amy Palomino is so dang likeable as Peggy Sawyer, and her outstanding taps are a real treat. Joe Thiessen's vocals were worth the price of admission, and left me wishing Julian had more to sing.

JMD said...

FYI - "I Only Have Eyes For You" was only in the revival of 42nd Street, not the original.

OnTheRoad said...

Acting has never been what 42nd St is all about. It's an All Singing! All Dancing! All Escapist Beguiling Musical Bon Bon offered Beautifully by the Excellent Broadway Rose Theatre Company and Dir/Chore Peggy Taphorn. Amy Palamino is just about the cutest thing I have ever seen on the Broadway Rose Stage (sooooooo talented), Joe Theissen emits masculine charm (thank you BRTC for rescuing this dynamic young performer from the choruses and giving him his 1st well deserved lead in town)Also noteworthy are Ron Daum (Hilarious in his boxers as the song writer who "Shuffles Off to Buffalo")and the "challenge tap" between Amy and her Husband (Tony Palamino) is the highlight of Act One. It's the feel good show of the summer!

Anonymous said...

Great show.

I had never been to Broadway Rose before. As the stereotypical inner Portlander, I initially pictured Tigard as somewhere near China as per one of those Steinberg cartoons of a New Yorker's view of the world.

Turns out I was completely wrong. It's very easy to get there, quite close by, and the experience was very enjoyable. I will definitely be back.

Broadway Rose is impressive. The Wednesday night after July 4, and most of the 600 seat theater was full. Jst another night at Broadway Rose. This is popular theater at its best.

I would encourage anyone who has not been to this thriving company to check it out.

I particularly liked Andrew Bray and Tony Palomino (I think those are the right names) in supporting roles. Ron Daum very funny.

Bravo.

Anonymous said...

I thought this show was great! That whole cast is so talented!

Amy is just great as Peggy Sawyer, you just fall in love with her the minute she walks on stage.

I also really enjoyed the other 3 girls in “go into your dance” (I am not sure of there names) Amy and the girls shined through that number.

The lead guys were all great, the voices, that dancing and the characters were very well executed. I would recommend this show to anyone!

Michael A. said...

I thought this show was great! That whole cast is so talented!

Amy is just great as Peggy Sawyer, you just fall in love with her the minute she walks on stage.

I also really enjoyed the other 3 girls in “go into your dance” (I am not sure of there names) With Amy and the girls they all shined through that number.

The lead guys were all great, the voices, that dancing and the characters were very well executed. I would recommend this show to anyone!

Anonymous said...

WOWSA is right! Joe Thiessen's finale is unforgettable - I see a lot of shows, and I had no idea there was a set of pipes like that in town. I don't know where he came from, but I hope he sticks around!

Anonymous said...

The singing and dancing was strong and entertaining! I loved Joe Thiessen's end song. Can that guy sing! Sets were a little boring and the costumes were sometimes painful to look at. But for summer fun, this show is great.

Anonymous said...

All the principals were quite excellent!

Anonymous said...

glad the secret is out at last -- b'way rose is some of the best and most consistent entertainment available -- it's just a shame that something as arbitrary and fickle as the dreaded drammys finally brought a decent amount of attention to it.
arguably "chicago" was a better show and arguably "jekyll and hyde" was better than that.
either way, now you know. go!

Anonymous said...

Yes it's well-done typical Broadway, lively and colorful, but empty and vapid. Congratulations to Broadway Rose! and Hooray for contemporary American theatre!

Anonymous said...

Yikes - pretense, anyone? If your brows were any higher they'd be mussing your carefully-mussed hair. I won't start a debate about the legitimacy of musical comedy, but I will say: If you hate the genre so much, I would think your time would be better spent attending (and thoughtfully critiquing) another production. You've told us your feelings on musical comedy, and precious little about the production. I did see the show, and I'm not necessarily the biggest fan of this style either - but it bears repeating that this is a phenomenal set of principles. fantastic dancing from Peggy & Billy, great torch numbers from Dorothy, and tremendous presence from a stern-but-debonair Julian March. Like the style or not, you at least have to give credit to a fine show.

Anonymatrix said...

Sorry to pitch a flamer into the mix here, but I have to respond to the last anonymous (3:43) and ask who he is taking issue with? who criticized the production? I ask because I'm having a hard time believing that everyone is so excited by the production of a musical that has been performed by every high school and community college in the country, for decades. I'm sorry, but THIS is what y'all get excited about? I know I'm biased, being a theatre artist myself, and I have not seen this production so who knows, maybe it really is mind-blowing. I just can't believe people would be raving about such a chestnut.

Sorry, it had to be said. Maybe I just feel like stirring things up a bit.

Chrissy said...

I don't think it's so much the show itself that everyone's excited about, but the fact that it was done so well. That's what everyone's raving about. And if you can make a chestnut like this one look good, you must be doing something right!

JRT said...

Being a 'theatre artist' doesn't make you biased. Not liking 'chestnuts' is your bias, and there is nothing wrong with that. There are a lot of 'theatre artists' who do indeed get excited about seeing familiar old shows. It's a different animal, that's all - no need for debate or judgement. Can't we all just get along? ;)

Allison said...

Pure Entertainment!
Aside from pert and perfect Amy Palomino(excellent as Peggy)it certainly is Men's Night over at the Broadway Rose. Debonaire Corey Brunish is underused as Pat Denning, "Tap happy" and energetic Tony Palomino as Andy the choreographer, James Montgomery gives a nice funny turn in the often overlooked "sugar daddy" role, Tim Falter recalls to mind the great Goldwyn tenors (and boy can he dance)as Billy. But for my money, hilarious Ron Daum as the composer (Shuffle off to Buffalo)and versatile Joe Theissen as Julian Marsh are the top of the heap in local talent. There is no better way to spend a summer night than to see a hot show (great production values) in a cool auditorium.Thank you again Broadway Rose.

Anonymous said...

a "chestnut" well done, is just as intoxicating as any theatre you will see.
i think the statement "i haven't seen it but what are you all so excited about?" speaks for itself.

Jim Crino said...

In a recent conversation with several local "theatre artists", I was struct by the following comment, "Well, if you like doing that boring stuff...I mean give me edgy!"

I believe that EVERYONE has the right to do ANY form of theatre that they want and can. So get some text, get a space, rehearse, advertise, sell some tickets and wait for the responce. But no one has the right to put down someone elses effort - the quality of the effort maybe but the effort itself? Oh Heck NO! The Broadway Rose has built their organization up from literally nothing over 15 years. They have made endless conections with their audience to bring those patrons what they WANT! And for that they have a larger very loyal following.

I know all the "Artists" are saying "We should give them what they NEED!" If so, go out and make your art work! Find YOUR following - make YOUR connections. Teach, Preach, march up and down the aisles if you want! Just don't be pissed off if PART of the masses don't want to hear what you have say! Find the part that does! If no one follows maybe your in the wrong parade! If you don't like "old chestnuts" - don't go see them!

After reading several posts since the Drammys I am inclined to add 2 parting comments.

Doing previously produced work is not the root of the dullness folks - A lack of directorial vision is! An old work done really well for a new audience can be amazing. Also, as to the issue of budgets to make theatre work - Imagination and skills cost NOTHING!

Matt said...

Really wonderful show. I have known Joe Thiessen for years, and he can act and he can sing. His finale was pretty intense. I am of course going to be very biased, but I'm glad so many people are finding out about him. He will be in a few more shows this summer before going back to being a drama teacher and doing productions for his lucky students. He will being doing the part of the Genie in BRTC production of Aladdin in August. A bit different character than the surly Julian, but everything he does seems effortless and natural. As for the rest of the show, I thought the leads did a really good job. I'm no expert on tapping, but I liked it. I thought the costumes were great and overall it was pretty funny.

Anonymatrix said...

Well, I feel like I should apologize, because it is dumb to put down a whole genre when I haven't even seen the production I'm using as an example of its lack of vigor. I was ASSUMING, which is never the route to astute criticism. And anyway, I have nothing against musicals. They can be fun and often rousing and full of life. So I take it all back. Good for 42nd Street.

Anonymous said...

Interesting. Kinda torn on this one.

On the one hand, I loved the show and totally agree with Jim Crino's comment. The audience cannot be forgotten. At the end of the day, people need to come see your show. What if they don't?

To paraphrase Bobby Gould in Mamet's SPEED-THE-PLOUGH, "Is there such a thing as a good film that loses money? Not really."

People have to come. Broadway Rose entertains more people on a single night than many theaters see in their entire season. You may have a great idea for a play - but what about the audience? Are they there?

Broadway Rose is attracting hundreds of people a night. That means something. It is not to be scoffed at. It is not the only thing to consider, but the sheer scale of Broadway Rose and their popularity in the community cannot be dismissed or written off. That is a tremendous achievement.

Now on the other hand.

There can also be something troubling about the "give the people what they want" argument. What responsibilty do theaters have to challenge their audiences, to mediate that raw desire, and even help shape it - to slip in some new stuff between the edges of the comfortable and safe?

Again, I totally respect Broadway Rose and love their stuff, but it can also feel like a time machine in there. I recently saw SISTERS OF SWING. There was something deeply unsettling about the gee-whiz story and particularly the treatment of WWII while outside, in the real world, Rome - er Lebanon - is burning.

Ok, is it Broadway Rose's fault that a war broke out during their production? Should they suddenly switch to some other show? Of course not. But maybe the dissonant juxtaposition forced a reconsideration for me.

At what point does the disconnect between the cultural images we hold up for ourselves and the reality of the larger world become a symptom of decay, nostalgia, escapism - and ultimately decline and fall? Is this healthy?

True, people have always wanted to escape. But is there anything the least bit weird about people fervently embracing bygone gems - seeing them over and over again - while new challenging material dies on the vine? Not to mention the larger backdrop of global anarchy. Business as usual?

Does this beloved entertainment help keep the blinders on? Does it insulate us from perceiving the reality of our world?

Years from now, will historians look back and comment: "And the amazing thing is the popular theaters were packed with people watching childlike reviews right up until the very end..."

Give the people what they want. Sure. But is that ALL we should do?