Friday, November 16, 2018

THE PROM: The Broadway Show to See If You Are Looking for A Rompin' Good Time

THE PROM is the show to see if you are looking for a joyous, funny, high-energy musical filled with gloriously over-the-top performances, bouncy show tunes, and supercharged dancing.  

Shakespeare it ain't, but what it is will remind you of the way Broadway musicals used to be. If that puts a smile on your face, then The Prom is not to be missed.   

To begin with, there are good old-fashioned Broadway lead performances by Beth Leavel and Brooks Ashmanskas, both of whom are likely to be nominated for Tonys. They play a couple of stars of the Great White Way whose latest show, something called Eleanor: The Eleanor Roosevelt Musical, has opened and closed on the same day. They have also been called out by none other than The New York Times for their self-centered, self-important egotism. 

Beth Leavel and Brooks Ashmanskas
Photo by Dean van Meer

Their publicist Sheldon, played by Josh Lamon, works with them to rebrand their image by hooking them up with a cause that will show them in a kinder light. So it's off to Indiana to give their support to a lesbian high school student, Emma (an excellent Caitlin Kinnunen; let's see more of her!), who wants to take her girlfriend to the school prom. Even in this day and age, this does not sit well with the conservative head of the PTA, played in all her polite viciousness by Courtenay Collins. If you are reminded of Hairspray, that is not a bad thing.  

The delicious cast is rounded out by Christopher Sieber, Angie Schworer, Michael Potts, and Isabelle McCalla. Writers of the script, filled with cleverly-placed Broadway in-jokes, are Bob Martin (you might remember him from The Drowsy Chaperone) and Chad Beguelin. Mr. Beguelin also wrote the lyrics to Matthew Sklar's upbeat score. Casey Nicholaw does the directing and choreographing honors.  

Here is some more photos and a link to a production video.  Enjoy!


Feel free to share this blog with your friends, and to offer up your own theater stories by posting a comment. I also invite you to check out the website Show-Score.Com, where you will find capsule reviews of current plays from Yours Truly and many other New York critics.

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