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BWW Review: THE UNAUTHORIZED MUSICAL PARODY OF THE BIG LEBOWSKI - An Incredibly Sung, High Energy, Hysterical Cabaret Event

THE UNAUTHORIZED MUSICAL PARODY OF THE BIG LEBOWSKI/written by Kate Pazakis & Ray Wetmore/directed by Tye Blue/musical direction by Gregory Nabours/Rockwell Table & Stage/thru July 22, 2016

A ridiculously talented troupe of singer/comedians totally revel and entertain in THE UNAUTHORIZED MUSICAL PARODY OF THE BIG LEBOWSKI. Staged, not only on the mainstage, but in various nooks and on available bar stools of the Rockwell; director Tye Blue smoothly whips his energy-infectious cast through the non-stop, laugh-a-minute spoof, covering unrelated popular songs that cleverly advance the loose plot.

Someone peeing on Dude's carpet has Dude going to millionaire Lebowski for compensation. Lebowski, and his assistant Brandt, decide to recruit Dude in delivering ransom to Tara Reid's kidnappers. Much hilarity does ensue as Tara Reid's rescue goes completely awry. Familiarity with the Coen Brothers' 1998 cult hit movie The Big Lebowski not necessary as inside repeated references (i.e., thorough, White Russians, vagina) become obvious and audience shout-backs become quite inviting to join in.

David Haverty's just so perfect as slacker bowler Dude, the film's Jeff Bridges' musical alter-ego. Haverty's usually laid-back Dude gets his moment to command the stage with his soaring vocals in "Fly Like an Eagle." The John Goodman role of Walter (Dude's BFF) in the movie receives a kick-ass take by very laugh-inducing Cynthia Sciacca. Trevin Goin as Dude and Walter's bowling teammate Donny gets his moment to shine in "We Are the World." Then Goin teams up with Sciacca and Haverty in a winning medley of 80's TV theme songs. Too funny!!!

John Flynn scores as the wheelchair-ed Lebowski speed-rapping "Big Poppa," then singing (and tapdancing) "Money, Money, Money." As Lebowski's assistant Brandt, Damon Gravina grabs his opportunity to come out of Brandt's nerdy personae in a vampy "It's Not Unusual," backed by a pair of introverted maids (given much comic life by Emma Hunton and Misha Reeves). Gravina also gets to display his comic chops as a Latino Jesus in "La Bamba."

In her main role as Maude Lebowski, Hunton shows off her vocal gifts, especially in her killer "White Rabbit." Hunton's comic dexterity's consistently on view for all in her not-so-subtle seduction of Dude. Between her obvious overstated bumps and grinds, Hunton seductively plays with her pubic hair rug on her nude leotard,

Reeves' piercing vocals wow as a Blonde Thug in "Paradise City." Then as Bunny, Reeves really, really works her minimally-clad body into sensual frenzies in "These Boots are Made for Walking" and especially "Baby's Got Back." Reeves' a total sexy riot!

E.K. Dangerfield and Kalen Edean both give sturdy support in a variety of integral characters

Cheesy sight-gags (paper toy car on a stick in the window, an extremely long phallic booster pillow, and bowling pin headdresses) hit the funnybone.

Great musical back-up throughout from the spot-on band led by musical director Gregory Nabours on piano; with Blake Estrada on bass, Nicholas Perez on guitar and Gregory Sadler on drums.

Warning: DO wear stain-resistant clothes if you're sitting ringside. Good possibility of a White Russian being splashed on you... or the occasional water guns spurting everywhere. All in contagious, outrageous fun!!!

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From This Author Gil Kaan