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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

    [title of show] simple fun

    Who says four chairs and a keyboard cannot make a Broadway show? Certainly not the cast of Arizona Theatre Company’s quirky new production [title of show].

    Celebrating its opening weekend at the Temple of Music and Art in downtown Tucson, audiences are already praising the offbeat, side-splitting musical.

    So what can a performance with such an unconventional name be about? To put it simply, it is about two guys writing a musical about two guys writing a musical. Confused yet? Well, that’s just the beginning of this unpredictable and wacky musical sensation.

    A rags-to-riches tale, the plot follows Hunter and Jeff, two unemployed actors living in New York City, on their quest to make it big on Broadway. When the two decide to write a musical but come up short on ideas, they decide to bring their two best friends into the mix. The result is a script about their struggles and progress while creating a script.

    From the opening number, “”Untitled Opening Number,”” to the closing chorus, ironically labeled “”Finale,”” the audience is spinning and whirling along with the actors as they hold hands and charge through the theatrical maze of writing a script, composing music and finding a financial backer.

    While witty banter, lively music and jazz hands make for one heck of show, the cast’s portrayal of their clever and eccentric characters, not to mention their strong vocals, really seal the deal.

    Stanley Bahorek, whose Broadway credits include starring as Leaf Coneybear in “”The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee,”” delivers an outstanding performance as Hunter. From his opening line, which recalls a tranny stealing shrimp off his plate in Chelsea, to his off-the-wall imitation of an unwritten script, Bahorek perfectly embodies the cleverly sarcastic, yet sincerely blunt persona that makes Hunter so entertaining.

    A perfect counterpart to Hunter’s fanatics, Sal Sabella has the character of Jeff’s calmer and always grammatically correct nature down to a tee.

    The women of the cast are nothing short of hilarious. Lauren Lebowitz, who plays the rowdy and outrageous Susan, is hard to forget with her smart and perfectly timed interjections, while Kelly McCormick’s powerful voice as Heidi brings vigor to every song.

    Larry, the one-man-band played by Christopher McGovern, is the only musical accompaniment and the source of quite a few puns. 

    Even though the energy begins to drag near the end, the constant jokes, sexual innuendos and overall energetic atmosphere of [title of show] keep the audience gasping with laughter.

    However, with a run-time of an hour and 40 minutes without an intermission, it is advised that you refrain from consuming a gallon of water before the opening number.

    Also, since it contains sexual references and mature language, [title of show] is recommended for adult audiences.

    [title of show] will play in Tucson from Jan. 23 to Feb. 13, and in Phoenix from Feb. 18 to March 7.

     

    Tickets are available at www.arizonatheatre.org or by calling the ATC box office at 622-2823. Discounts are available for students, seniors and active military on specific performance days.

     

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