Reston Community Players Forbidden BroadwayBy Laura & Mike Clark • Nov 14th, 2008 • Category: Reviews
Reston Community Players
Reston Community Center, Reston, VA
$20/$17 Seniors and Students
Through November 23rd
Forbidden Broadway is a musical revue created and written by Gerard Alessandrini. It is a parody of Broadway shows and celebrities.
This musical tribute was performed well by a mix of veteran singers and dancers as well as a couple of new faces. The group sang well and acted together as a team. The pianist, Chris Borton, did an excellent job of keeping things upbeat and lively. The performers tried to interact with the audience. The Sunday afternoon crowd started out a little hesitant, but soon warmed up and enjoyed the performance very much.
Some favorite song sketches were the songs from “More Miserable” and included “It’s too High” sung by Ron Sweeney and “On My Phone” sung by Courtney Basich. The songs were sung loudly and over dramatically which was just great.
There were also some really good dance numbers. In Act II, Adrian Cubbage moved expressively to a song from Cats. His cat-like movements captured the show purrfectly.
With the exception of the piano, all the props were taken on and off the stage. In the song “Defying Subtlety,” the monkey came onstage with some steps and a small fan which he used to simulate Elphaba’s long cape. In the Bottle Dance from Fiddler on The Roof, some of the cast came out with hats that had various types of “bottles” (a coffee cup, soda bottle, etc) attached to their heads. They sang mightily and no one lost a bottle, a step, or a beat. Projected backgrounds let the audience know what musical was being performed. The Lighting Designer was Adam Konowe.
Forbidden Broadway ran about two hours with one intermission. It is playing through Sunday November 23, Fridays and Saturdays at 8, Sunday matinees at 2:30, and a Saturday matinee on the 15th at 2:30 at the Reston Community Center in Reston, Virginia. For anyone who enjoys the show tunes of Broadway both old and new come out to an enjoyable evening of fun entertainment.
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And now, on with the show.
Imagine, if you will, sitting in some altered state as you channle surf between old Saturday Night Live or Carol Burnett shows and one of those PBS ‘Best of Broadway‘specials or tributes. Half asleep, you dream of a revue that crazies up not only the iconic shows of Broadway, but those who made them so. This is Forbidden Broadway. Now into its 25th year, the original NY production offers fresh fodder for the annals of the Great White Way each season, lampooning the hits and the misses in musical parody. [Webster: “a literary or nusical work in which the style of an author or work is closely imitated for comic effect or in ridicule.”] The arrows of comedy pierce at different angles. Parody in our show is aimed closer to a form of flattery than that of ridicule, at least that’s our intention. If the opposite of love is indifference, then hopefully the razzing we give the art form demonstrates the passion we have for it. Researching and reshapig these classics has been beyond fun from this side — a tribute to the talented cast, staff and crew.
At one time, the schedule for renovations here at the Community Center threatened RCP’s four show season. When it looked like there was the possibility to ‘fit a show’ in the November time slot, RCP looked for a revue type show that would be easier to mount with an abbreviated tech time onstage. While there is truth in this, it’s difficult for me to do anything simple. Twenty-five different musical numbers, over 55 costumes for siz actors in under 2 hours. Yah. Simple little show. Great thanks to a talented cast who made my job feel at times effortless, and actually made me look like a choreographer. Tremendous thanks to the dynamic duos who costumed and wigged the group. And of course, thaks to those who keep things moving, lit, and heard onstage. This show doesn’t have any great message or meaning or issues it is trying to resolve. As they sing in the opening number, “it’s jsut bubble gum” — a treat to enjoy while you forget about the world outside. A bit of musical comedy escapism for those of the theatrical bent. If you love Broadway musicals, you’ll treasaure the treats hidden within, but we think even a novice will enjoy an insider’s view to that magical land called Broadway, and why some of us are addicted to it. On with the show….
- Courtney Basich
- Adrian Cubbage
- Sharon Grant
- Joshua Redford
- Ron Sweeney
- Jolene Vettese
- Producer: Laura Baughman
- Director: Andrew JM Regiec
- Musical Director: JoEllen Borton
- Co-Musical Director: Chris Borton
- Accompanist: Chris Borton
- Choreographer: Andrew JM Regiec
- Dance Assistant: Alyson Mullee
- Set Design: Andrew JM Regiec
- Master Carpenter: Sara Birkhead
- Stage Manager: Eileen Mullee
- Costume Design: Charlotte Marson, Judy Whelihan
- Costume Construction: Charlotte Marson, Judy Whelihan
- Wardrobe Mistress: Charlotte Marson
- Dressers: Hannah Rohlfs, Joanne Quam, Susan Eimas, Mary Catherine Williams
- Makeup Design: Sue Pinkman
- JHair & Wigs: Sue Pinkman, Mark Bartyczak, Anna Michelle Jackson
- Lighting Design: Adam Konowe
- Master Electrician: Ian Claar
- Sound Design: Kevin Harney
- Properties Mistress: Joanne Quam
- Set Construction: Sara Birkhead, Skip Larson
- Running Crew Chief: Sara Birkhead
- Running Crew: Chris Fouts, David Holt, Karen Schlumpf, Craig Davies
- Light Board Operator: Ian Claar, Susan Eimas
- Spotlight Operator: Ben Porter
- Sound Board Operators: Jason Willet, Ben Porter
- Flyman: Rick Schneider
- Publicity: Kay Vakerics, Amy Frank
- Showbill: Jerry Morse, Jordana Al-Saigh
- Photographer: Joe Douglass
- Teeshirts & Dance Bags: Mastercraft Awards/Sew Cool Embroidery
This article can be linked to as: http://washingtondc.showbizradio.com/goto/2663.
Laura & Mike Clark started ShowBizRadio in August 2005 because they love live theater. They each have both performed in and worked behind the scenes in DC area productions, as well as earned a Career Studies Certificate in Theater from Northern Virginia Community College. Mike & Laura are each members of the American Theatre Critics Association, and Mike is a member of the Online News Association.