Thursday, July 24, 2014

This North Coast Weekend

The Poor of New York, an 1857 melodrama about families victimized by financial corruption, opens at North Coast Repertory Theatre in Eureka with a benefit for cast and crew on Thursday July 24 at 8 p.m. As a classic melodrama, good triumphs over evil. Performances continue through Aug. 16. Directed by Alex Service, it features David Simms, Randall Larson, Shirley Santino, Toodie SueAnn Boll, Scott Osborn, Jim Buschmann and David Moore. 442-6278,  I'll review this for next week.

On Friday, the musical The Wedding Singer opens at Ferndale Repertory Theatre. Take a 95-minute Adam Sandler romantic comedy movie set in 1985 and inject it with an additional hour and a half of musical reminders of the 1980s’ more superficial features, add frenetic energy and period costumes and you’ve got this 2006 Broadway entertainment, which has since toured the world.

I'm not much for 80's nostalgia--having lived through the decade, I can't disentangle it from the lows (Reaganomics, Iran-Contra, privatization, decimation of the NEA, PBS and arts in schools etc.) and highs that don't quite fit the comedy stereotypes (Sting, Peter Gabriel, Mandela, Ladysmith Black Mambazo, The Malling of America)--but I gather that it's fashionable now so there's probably a big audience for which this is the perfect summer hoot.

I don't know how funny The Wedding Singer is, but Ben Brantley's review of the Broadway production is hilarious.  A gamut of reactions to the Chicago production can be found in this collection of reviews.

The Wedding Singer was written by Tim Herlihy and Chad Beguelin (also the lyricist) with music by Matthew Sklar. Directed at Ferndale Rep by Brandi Lacy, with musical direction by Molly Severdia and choreography by Danielle Cichon, it features Erik Standifird, Sasha Shay, Tyler Rich, Megan Hensley and Cichon heading a large cast. The Wedding Singer opens Friday July 25, playing Fridays and Saturdays at 8 p.m. and Sundays at 2 p.m. through August 17. There’s a special Actors Benefit performance on Thursdays Aug. 7 at 8 p.m., preceded by live music from The Attic at 7 p.m. 786-5483,

A limited run of Elisabeth's Book at Dell'Arte begins Wednesday, and is previewed below.

This is the final weekend for the Durang Durang (see, an 80s joke) comedy Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike at Redwood Curtain.

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