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|Prom/Prom Girls: "The Marvelous Wonderettes," at the Circa ’21 Dinner Playhouse through November 5|
|Theatre - Reviews|
|Written by Thom White|
|Monday, 03 October 2011 06:00|
I found the Circa ’21 Dinner Playhouse’s The Marvelous Wonderettes to be sweet, well-sung, and, frankly, borderline annoying.
In the first act of the show, playwright Roger Bean presents a selection of smile-inducing ’50s and ’60s pop songs set against the backdrop of a high-school “songleader” squad performing at their senior prom. In the second act, more period favorites are sung during the girls’ 10-year reunion. And on Friday night, I found it hard not to bop my head along to the happy music, with its titles including “Mr. Sandman,” “Lollipop, Lollipop,” and “It’s in His Kiss (The Shoop Shoop Song).” Were the show simply a concert of 34 songs (if I counted correctly), it would be hard to find fault with the production and its quartet of actresses.
As the feisty Betty Jean, the boyfriend-stealing Cindy Lou, the disciplined Missy, and the excitable Suzy, Shannon McMillan, Adrienne Griffiths, Kirsten Sparks, and Megan Wheeler, respectively, are full of playing-to-the-balcony energy – and are more than easy on the ears – as they croon, belt, and harmonize their way through the musical’s tunes. It’s an absolute pleasure to hear them sing, whether in solos or quartets. And thanks to Gregory Hiatt’s brightly colorful, era-appropriate costumes that flow beautifully with director/choreographer Barbara Hartwig’s dance steps, it’s a pleasure to watch, too.
For tickets and information, call (309)786-7733 extension 2 or visit Circa21.com.
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