BWW Reviews: GOINÂ' STEADY THE MUSICAL from Wing-It Productions
Most actors have had that typical nightmare; you're suddenly in the wings about to go on for a musical that you've never even heard of before. For most, it's a terrifying thought. But for the improv actors at Wing-It's production of their improvised 1950's Rock 'n Roll musical, "Goin' Steady: The Musical" it's just another day at the office. And these folks make it look amazingly easy and with hysterical results.
So what can I tell you about the story? Well in this case, everything! Normally I don't want to give too much away but since the same show will never happen twice, then I can tell you what I saw the other night. We followed the students at Buster Willowcrest High as they geared up for their Student Body President elections. Mary, who also runs the local banana stand, was running with the help of her new bad boy boyfriend, Bobby Ace who can sell anything. But Bobby is also helping the competition for his own ulterior motives. And those few seeds were the jumping off points for these talented improvisers from the suggestions from the audience. From there we had Bible thumping kids, a tough girl with polio, a nerd/beatnik poet who claims high prowess with women even though he's never been on a date, another nerd with a penchant for crippled girls and Mary's dimwitted sister who just wants to massage Bobby's leg. And of course the faculty of the school that is out of money because they need to repay their debt to China ... at any cost. But don't expect those same characters or details again as even they change from night to night and all set to brand new songs under the direction of music director Rob Scherzer.
Veteran musical theater and improv performers Jon Axell, Jillian Boshart, Christopher Bryhan, Kai Curtis, Mike Murphy, Sara Powers, Mandy Price, Natasha Ransom, Elicia Wickstead and Doug Willott had the audience in stitches as they sang about promises to be kept, how to sell, and of course which girl is tougher. It, of course, all changes every night but the night I was there I was particularly impressed by dueling school administrators Wickstead and Murphy and the star crossed lovers Price and Willott. And I also have to mention Ransom who communicated volumes with a tilt of the head and dorky smile. I thought I was going to lose it when she was sent off for ice cream and came back with a cup of ice and some non-dairy creamer.
So what can be said about this show that you'll never see? Loved it! Hysterical! Will you see just as fun a show when you go? With the kind of talent they have on that stage, I'm sure you will! Oh and one more thing I learned from the other night that I must pass on. If you come across a guy with a dancing bear be sure to stop and pay him and watch the bear do his dance. It's only polite. Just so you know.
"Goin' Steady: The Musical" plays at Wing-It productions in the University District through April 22nd. For tickets or information visit them online at www.wingitpresents.com.
Photo credits: Luke Walker