note: entire contents copyright 2006 by Beverly Creasey
“The two most beautiful words in the English language.” Those fateful words would be, of course, ‘MUSICAL COMEDY.’ So says the producer of the play within the play in the all singing, all dancing extravaganza that is 42ND STREET. This is the Harry Warren musical where a gypsy from the chorus steps into the lead and “comes back a star.” It happened in real life to Shirley MacLaine when Carol Haney broke her leg and it happens in 42ND STREET to sweet, little Peggy Sawyer (Emilee Dennis).
The Bay Colony Productions’ show is magical, from Dori Bryan’s peek-a-boo choreography to her suitcase syncopation. Each production number is more inventive than the last (we’re talkin’ roller skates!) and if that weren’t enough, Bryan sizzles on stage as well, as the formidable “star” who breaks her ankle and begrudgingly paves the way for the little hoofer from “Allentown” to shine. Bryan’s tour de force work elevates the Orpheum production way beyond “community theater” status. Chrissy McCartney Fresco and Nathan Lamont, too, as the comic leads, add professional polish to the production, as does Michael Warner as the juvenile heart throb.
John Porcaro, who it seems, is in every show in town, taps up a storm as the dance captain. Kimberly Paulson Frigon and her fellow chorines add the perfect dash of ditz (and glamour, in Daniel Kozar’s drop dead gorgeous costumes) to every number they’re in, divine tunes like “Lullaby of Broadway” and the cure for the Depression blues, “We’re in the Money.”
Director Bill Cunningham and music director Robert J. Goldman bring home a giggle-a-minute show, with a sparkling Broadway set by Daniel Kozar, lit by Michael Teixeira. You have only one more week before the marquee goes dark and they “Shuffle off to Buffalo.”