Review: A HARMONY BOYS' CHRISTMAS: LIVE IN CONCERT! - An Hysterical Satirical Rhapsody in Political Incorrectness - Even For 1962

By: Dec. 19, 2016
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A HARMONY BOYS' CHRISTMAS: LIVE IN CONCERT!/written & directed by Aaron Matijasic/Woodshed Studios/December 18, 2016: one-night-only

A very fun, irreverent spoof on a Christmastime charity fundraiser, A HARMONY BOYS' CHRISTMAS: LIVE IN CONCERT!, features the harmonious quartet with their mellow four-piece, back-up band and supporting cast hilariously performing at their annual "Force Feed The World" charity concert. Cleverly written and smoothly directed by Aaron Matijasic, AHBC:LIC easily shows, unfortunately, that political times haven't improved as much as we would like to think from 1962 (which AHBC:LIC is set in) and present-day 2016. The touched-on 1962 issues of immigration, homosexuality and abortion rights seem much the same today. The Boys play everything fairly straight allowing the irony and double entendres to score the many laughs.

The Boys themselves are melodiously sung and comically well-played by Matijasic (Billy Harmony), Michael Hoy (Xian Ling Moon Harmony), Gabriel Oliva (Barry Harmony), and Al Rahn (Bobby Harmony).

The Boys opening song "Wonderful, Wonderful Day" features a gorgeous harmonic vocal sound complemented by the purposely cheesy and cutesy movements (choreographed by Jen Oundjian). Later, "Mambo, Santa Mambo" shows off their sturdy four-part harmony with Oliva effectively soloing with his basso voice.

Will Harris does double duty as the pre-show Santa available for lap photos, and the Harmony Boys musical manager Morty Saperstein keeping the narrative smart and snappy in between the Boys' songs.

Nicole Gemma as Billy's wife Ruth finally gets her opportunity in the second act to fully exhibit her comic timing and strong vocal pipes in "Yes, There Is a Santa Claus."

Autry Jesperson, and Camdyn Wren initially get introduce as the cherub-voiced street urchins in "Will Santa Come to Shanty Town?" They then spend the rest of the show providing strong support as Billy and Ruth's children Joey and Louise.

A much deserved shout-out to Alexa Camargo for her spot-on costuming for the red cardigan Boys, Ruth's striking black cocktail ensemble, and the Harmonettes' three sets of matching outfits (sparkly green short dresses with big red bows to belt in their waists, sandwich board cut-outs of Newport cigarette packs, and tan-colored minis topped with reindeer ears). Natalie Charouhas, Meaghan Hughes, and Faydean Kielty wear their all Harmonette costumes well, milking the maximum laughs werking their Newport Cigarette uniforms.

Musical director Ben Stanton ably leads his four-piece Ben Stanton & His Miraculous Threesome without ever overpowering the vocals.