Ron Irwin Travel & Entertainment

 


 

The Marvelous Wonderettes

a musical comedy at the Sierra Madre Playhouse

Rating  ****

‘The Marvelous and more Wonderettes.’  Zany passion

The year is 1958 and the location is Springfield High School or pretty much any high school in Anytown USA and it is senior prom night.  The entertainment is being provided by four lovely young ladies calling themselves “The Marvelous Wonderettes.”  Not just “The Wonderettes” mind you but “The Marvelous Wonderettes.”  A pleasing plethora of mid 1950’s era pop music flows with sweet harmony from the stage as “The Marvelous Wonderettes” Cindy Lou [Kelsey Boze], Suzy [Kelly Klopocinski] Betty Jean [Kate Ponzio] and Missy [Afton Quast] exquisitely deliver a medley of period pop songs such as “All I Have to do is Dream, Born Too Late, Goodnight Sweetheart” and “Dream Lover” plus many more.  No rap, just real music aimed mainly at the teen population where most of us have been at least once.  But then there is the drama and some sassy humor.

The prom queen has yet to be crowned and all four girls on stage and one who is absent are in the race prompting a wild ride of jibs and jabs by and between the girls as they compete against each other for the crown.  The four actors fully engage the audience as they, the audience, are invited to cast their ballots for prom Queen.  By the time act one concludes we have a winner and it is time for the four “Wonderettes” to move on with their post high school lives. 

So in act two the “Wonderettes” are reunited at a tenth high school reunion.  What happened to each of them as their post high school lives provide another serving of drama, humor and 1960’s era music.

All in all “The Marvelous Wonderettes” is a truly excellent serving of humor and a reminder of  the many quirks and oddities of high school life in particular and for that matter life in general.  Virtually everyone who sees the show will connect with at least some of the behaviors and many of the songs even if they weren’t on the “Top 40” during your life.  “The Marvelous Wonderettes” does a great job of generating warm feelings, lots of giggles and most likely more than a few fond memories.  While not precisely accurate I thought that in many ways “The Marvelous Wonderettes” is the prequel to “American Graffiti.”  But however you define this show it is absolutely deserving of your time.

“The Marvelous Wonderettes” is playing now at the perfect venue the Sierra Madre Playhouse, 87 W. Sierra Madre Boulevard, Sierra Madre, California now through August 26th.  Show dates and times are    Fridays and Saturdays at 8:00 p.m. and Sundays at 2:30 p.m.  There will also be three Saturday matinees at 2:30 p.m. August 12, 19 and 26.  Make your reservation by calling:  626-355-4318 and tickets may be purchased online at:  www.sierramadreplayhouse.org.  There is abundant free parking available and several great choices for dining nearby the theatre.  But despite the lyrics of the song you really do need to do a little bit more than dream, you need to see the show to get fully immersed in its magic. 
For another excellent art form look at this: 

https://fineartamerica.com/artists/ronald+irwin

 

Copyright © 2017  Ron Irwin


 

‘Any Night’ a premier. 

 Rating ***

As the show begins there are two players on stage.  Their relationship is a best vague yet in some ways strong.  There is some dancing and dialogue evolves as the woman takes up residence in a small apartment managed by the man.  Even the set is somewhat vague yet conveys the idea that the man is somehow either controlling or at the very least keeping a very close watch on the woman.  At one point a tarot card is found and apparently that card states that one of you shall die.  The plot thickens.  Then other voices enter seemingly directing the man in some way. 

All in all it is a steadily deepening mystery.  And now please forgive me but I must get a little bit personal for a moment, but then way not it is I who is writing this.  As I watched this show unfold I began to recall a moment in my life a few years back now when after dying briefly I spent many days in a coma in ICU.  During those dark days I would often hallucinate in a very deep and very powerful way about things that were at the same time known and unknown and always in the ordinary world very weird.  Was I watching that same effect in this show?  Were these two clearly talented actors presenting the mental state of someone on the very edge of death? 

“Any Night” is a very non-typical theatrical production but that can and in this case I believe in fact is a very good thing because sometimes we need to escape the ordinary.  “Any Night” had a very successful launch in Austin, Texas at The Filigree Theatre and by EVN Productions.  It was written by Daniel Arnold and Medina Hahn

is directed by Elizabeth V. Newman and stars Zac Thomas and Marie Fahlgren.  True it isn’t Shakespeare nor Hamilton but it is a very unique and worthy show you will not soon forget. 

“Any Night” will only be in town a fairly short while, now through July 30th so don’t waste time “thinking about it” go and experience it at the 17 Sacred Fools Theatre Company, 1076 Lillian Way, Hollywood, California.  Show times are Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays at 8:00 p.m. and Sundays at 5:00 p.m.  Reservations and ticketing are available by calling:  512-496-5208.  Just be prepared to have your mind stretched. 


For another excellent art form look at this:  https://fineartamerica.com/artists/ronald+irwinCopyright 2017 Ron Irwin