THE PAPARAZZI Shines In Guadalajara

THE PAPARAZZI Shines In GuadalajaraOn Thursday night "The Paparazzi" opened at the Vivien Blumenthal Theatre in Guadalajara, Mexico and the place lit up like a Hollywood premiere. Ten actors brilliantly portraying dozens of parts, including celebrities, photographers and paparazzi, all led by the ghost of Walter Winchell in a new musical by Al Tapper and Tony Sportiello, brought to life by legendary Mexican director Mauricio Cedeno.

The theater was packed, the expectation strong as this was the same creative team responsible for "National Pastime". the most awarded musical in Guadalajara history; and "Sessions", the first Off Broadway musical ever to be presented in this enchanting city of eight million people. Those in attendance were not disappointed. Delivered at a non-stop, almost frantic pace, the musical conveys the speed and chaos which is the paparazzi; the songs artfully woven around the plot, alternately wild and joyous to soulful and haunting. And who knew a song about Brooklyn would become a crowd favorite in Guadalajara?

Luisa Cortes is stunning as Christie Barnes, the ambitious young writer who yearns to win a Pulitzer Prize but instead gets caught up in the exciting, glamorous and oh-so-profitable life of the paparazzi. Joaquin Romero skillfully controls the action as Master of Ceremonies Walter Winchell, the man who created an entire industry. Franz Blumenthaley, Victor Aceves, Mafer Santes, Vanessa Arroyo, Gibran Macias, Giselle Restelli,Enrique Valdez, Blanca Montoya and Sandra Geneviere inhabit the men and women caught up in this frenetic world, where speed is more important than substance and deadlines more important than the truth.

This is the third collaboration between Algonquin Theater Productions and the talented group of artists led by Mauricio Cedeno but the first to premiere in Mexico. "The Paparazzi" plays through October in Guadalajara. Plans are already being made for a production of "The Paparazzi" here in the States even as discussions are planned for further theatrical collaboration between the two countries. In the world of theater, we build bridges instead of walls.

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