Saturday, September 24, 2005

You're All Free to Go

Saw the rollicking romp of a musical, "On The Town" tonight presented by Reprise! at the Freud Playhouse on the UCLA campus.

It's a wonderful show that opened on Broadway on December 28, 1944 and ran for 462 performances. There's not much of a story -- three sailors on a 24-hour leave in New York City -- but there's lots of great singing and dancing.

The Music is by Leonard Bernstein and the Book and Lyrics are by the famous writing team of Adolph Green and Betty Comden (their first Broadway show). And the original choreography was by Jerome Robbins. Amazingly, when the show opened in 1944 they were all under 30 years of age.

Nancy Walker starred in the original production as the man-hunting cab driver. And Betty Comden starred as Claire de Loone, the anthropologist and Adolph Green starred as Ozzie, her sailor-boyfriend.

Reprise! stages basic productions of older musicals -- not much in the way of sets or costumes, but they always have talented casts who perform their hearts out.

In tonight's production Harriet Harris played Madame Dilly. She is amazing in this comedic role. She won a Tony as Mrs. Meers in "Thoroughly Modern Millie" and currently appears as Felicia Tillman on "Desperate Housewives." Her TV credits also include the recurring role as Frasier's agent, Bebe Glazer.

Celebrity Sighting: Bumped into actor Robert Forester today in the elevator. Turns out we live in the same building. How cool is that?

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