The star of Nice Work if You Can Get It, the current production of Dallas Summer Musicals at the Fair Park Music Hall, isn’t one of its leads. The star of this show actually is its chorus.
Yes, the chorus is what keeps you waiting for the next musical number and the next, because this production is filled with talented dancers, great singers and some old-school hoofing In the show packed with timeless tunes penned by George and Ira Gershwin, the music shines and David Eggers’ upbeat choreography sparkles. Whether it’s a pinstripe-wearing vice squad or pink-bubbled bathers, the musical numbers are ridiculously fun.
The plot is thin, but musical theater lovers won’t care. Set in the Roaring Twenties, the comedy follows a wealthy playboy on the verge of his wedding who meets a blonde bootlegger. Plenty of funny lines are thrown in along the predictable story that features a charming and boyish Alex Enterline as the male lead and petite Mariah MacFarlane as the female lead. If there’s a weak link, it’s MacFarlane whose voice is strong but whose transitions from rough-talking bootlegger to songstress can be startlingly abrupt.
But enjoying the old-fashioned musical farce and forgiving its flaws is easy. Nice Work if You Can Get It will leave audiences singing “ ‘S Wonderful.”
The show (dallassummermusicals.org) continues through Sunday at Fair Park Music Hall in Dallas, then moves to Bass Performance Hall in Fort Worth for a run Sept. 16 through 21.
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The Artisan Center Theater in Hurst has been a growing theater for the past six years. Â The owners, Rick and DeeAnn Blair, made the risky choice in the beginning that they would only produce “family friendly” shows, and now they can brag about a 50,000-person seating total last year.
Artisan ended this summer with West Side Story, which was a perfect show to go out with. Â Never have I even thought West Side Story could be done in the round, but Artisan never fails. Kudos to both casts for making the show outstanding even with the difficulty of being in the round. Â I was amazed by Eddie Floresca’s choreography right off the bat; the cast was very tight and full of energy. Â I could tell he made them work very hard. Â Evan Ramos and Sarah Dickerson killed portraying the helpless romantics Tony and Maria. Â Cheers to the great casting. Dennis Canright’s wonderful direction made them so believable. West Side Story runs through Aug. 29th. Â This production is worth every penny, and I put my word on that. Tickets have been selling out every night, and I recommend using the theater’s Web site www.artisanct.com to buy tickets in advance. Seeing Artisan’s production of West Side Story will be a night one will not forget.Â Â Â
ESocialWorld Guest contributor Drew Chapa is a veteran performer to the Dallas/ Fort Worth stage, as well as many theaters throughout the country.Â Â
Currently Mr. Chapa is a student at the prestigious Berklee College of Music in Boston.Â
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