BWW Reviews: New Line Off Line's Lively Cabaret, WHAT THE HELL ARE WE DOING HERE?

BWW Reviews: New Line Off Line's Lively Cabaret, WHAT THE HELL ARE WE DOING HERE?

I've seen a great deal of cabaret shows over the years, and some are lively and enjoyable, while others are so serious and studied that it's sometimes work just to sit through them. But, New Line Off Line's Cabaret, What the Hell are We Doing Here?(January 25th at the Kranzberg), is a kind of cat indeed. It's a cabaret with attitude. Fresh and full of cool, the show offers a plethora of offbeat material that deserves to be heard by an audience. In director Mike Dowdy's more than capable hands, performers Ryan Foizey and Marcy Wiegert blasted their way through about an hour of songs and personal patter to the absolute delight of a sold out crowd.

Opening with "Totally F*****" from Spring Awakening set the tone immediately, and it followed with Foizey and Wiegert commenting on the nature of their show. Rather than follow some old fashioned notion, they decided they would explore the fact that they're both in their mid-twenties and still searching for meaning and purpose in their lives. Unfortunately, that feeling doesn't always resolve itself they way you wish it might, and in the time you've allotted.

Accompanied by expert pianist Justin Smolik, the pair dived into a number of intriguing numbers, including Wiegert's soulful take on "Easy to be Hard" (Hair) , and her especially affecting run through "Home" (The Wiz). Foizey distinguished himself on the amusing "Purpose" from Avenue Q, and "Sailing" from A New Brain. Several duets allowed for a lovely blending of these two distinct voices, and "I'm Gone", from Hands on a Hardbody was surely a highlight.

Though this may be a bit late in arriving, keep your eyes peeled for more events coming from New Line Theatre and their interesting offshoot, New Line Off Line.

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Chris Gibson Chris has been active in the local theatre scene for over 30 years. In addition to his acting work, he's also contributed as a director, writer and composer. Though, initially a film buff, he grew tired of the sanitized, PG-13 rated blockbusters that were being continually shoved down his throat by the studios. An opportunity to review theatre in St. Louis has grown exponentially with the sudden explosion of venues and talent in the region. He now finds himself obsessed with witnessing those precious, electric moments that can only happen live, on stage.


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