Saturday, December 13, 2014

Honeymoon in Vegas ****

This hilarious show which was a hit at Paper Mill Playhouse last year puts the comedy back in Broadway musical comedy. No conjoined twins, economic malaise, alternative realities or political strife here — just wacky comedy without any pretension of deeper meaning. Jason Robert Brown’s catchy music, wonderfully orchestrated, recalls the brassy big band era, but his clever lyrics are full of up-to-the-minute references. Andrew Bergman’s book captures the best of his 1992 film. The fine cast is led by the talented Rob McClure as the marriage-averse nebbishy Jack, Brynn O’Malley as his long-suffering fiancee Betsy and Tony Danza as the shady gambler Tommy who takes a shine to Betsy because she is a look-alike of his late wife. Nancy Opel is hilarious as the ghost of Jack’s mother, who forced him into a deathbed promise never to marry. Tommy schemes to lure Jack into losing a fortune at poker and then proposes to forgive the debt if he can spend a weekend in Hawaii with Betsy. The escalating silliness includes a harpist who plays the instrument with her breasts and a troupe of skydiving Elvis impersonators. Anita Louizos’s scenic design is complex and attractive. The set constantly reconfigures to create locations in New York, Las Vegas and Hawaii with the assistance of evocative projections. The costumes by Brian C. Hemesath are delightful. The choreography by Denis Jones is lively. Gary Griffin’s direction keeps everything moving smoothly. If you are looking for a show with substance, don’t look here. If you just want an entertaining evening, you’ve come to the right place. Now in previews at the Nederlander Theatre. Running time: 2 hours, 30 minutes including intermission.


Anonymous said...

yes, this show is camp, fast, fun and so well done. I loved it from beginning to end.

Robert Sholiton said...

I'm glad you enjoyed it too. I just don't understand why some people have attacked it with such venom.