BWW Review: CHICO'S ANGELS 5-O WAIKIKI CHICAS - You Wanna Lei It!
The writing team of Kurt Koehler and Oscar Quintero have hilariously expanded their Chico's Angels' episode CHICO'S ANGELS 5-O WAIKIKI CHICAS from its usual cabaret form into a full-stage production. Regularly based in the Cavern Club Celebrity Theater @ Casita Del Campo, Angels just performed a four-show run at the Colony Theatre in Burbank, sitting three to four times their average audience of the intimate basement theatre of Casita Del Campo. Chico's Angels aficionados will easily spot the additions to this classic WAIKIKI CHICAS episode. A staple of local Los Angeles theatre, Chico's Angels' a hysterical, R-rated spoof of the television timeless series Charlie's Angels. Koehler smoothly directs these three spot-on Latina drag performers inhabiting the three Chico's Angels - the "all about me" Kay Sedia, the not-so-smart, double-entendre spouting Frieda Laye and the fake eye-lashing batting, lip-quivering Chita Parol. Their comic timing and smooth, effortless interplay's quite evident from their fifteen years of performing together. WAIKIKI CHICAS does celebrate their Quinceanera, after all. As Bossman, the go-between of Chico and the Angels, Alejandro Patino, as always, gives solid support as the sensible one to the sometimes irrational Angels.
This episode of WAIKIKI CHICAS involves the murder/disappearance of a couple of Hula Ho dancers. Hula Ho's owner Monty (Daran Noris with a mastery of comic delivery) hires the Angels to investigate the unexplained goings-on.
In this expanded production, the audience gets to see and know the Hula Ho dancers, led by scene-stealing Beth Leckbee as Edna, lead Hula Ho dancer and wife of Monty. Chico's Angels staple Cher Ferreyra uses every opportunity to leave her side-splitting mark in her dual roles of the murdered Lana and the conniving choreographer Kiki.
Formerly the resident, rarely-speaking Hunk of Chico's Angels; the charismatic Duke Shoman receives more stage time and speaking lines as the pec-tacular Alika. A wonderful unscripted moment had Alika poking Chita with his long stick, making Chita totally lose her composure. Too funny!!!
Doreen Calderon and Jaci Pund provide plentiful back-up in their variety of roles.
A most welcome addition to WAIKIKI CHICAS, the full-screen videos (video tech JT Seaton) providing vivid backdrops for the craziness onstage. All nimbly handle Ray Garcia's fun choreography (especially Chita Parol!). And kudos to Craig Taggart's over-the-top, vibrant costumes for all.
If you missed this Chico's Angels episode, you're in luck as they're already rehearsing for their Christmas special FELIZ NAVI DIVAS for performances November 24 through 28 back at Casita del Campo.