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BWW Review: I LOVE YOU, YOU'RE PERFECT, NOW CHANGE at Swift Creek Mill Theatre

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Swift Creek Mill Theatre Reopens

BWW Review: I LOVE YOU, YOU'RE PERFECT, NOW CHANGE at Swift Creek Mill Theatre Swift Creek Mill's season opener was to be its March 2020 midseason musical, "I Love You, You're Perfect, Now Change." The production has been in mothballs for 18 long months, but at last it's onstage.

It's a genial and tuneful evening, under Swift Creek Artistic Director Tom Width's direction. It's the kind of thing he's expert with--some comedy and some songs, and a set design by the director that optimizes the wide but shallow Mill stage.

The cast he's assembled is talented and appealing. Rachel Marrs, Luke Schares, Nicole Morris-Anastasi and Ian Page are all dynamic singers and skillful comic actors, and they move sharply from one sketch to another, portraying all kinds of relationship moments, from dating to marriage to growing old together.

But the 1995 revue by Joe DiPietro and Jimmy Roberts shows its age. The musical ran for years Off-Broadway. Now it's updated with a few references to Google and Tinder, but its attitude remains firmly in the era of "Men Are from Mars, Women Are from Venus." There are a few laughs, but probably fewer than an average episode of "The Mary Tyler Moore Show" (to which the script also refers).

It's enjoyable enough, though, especially because of the game cast and the true pleasure of being back in the theater. Maura Lynch Cravey's costumes are fine, especially the purposely hideous bridesmaid dress, and Joe Doran's assured lighting design makes the most of the staging. There's an excellent four-piece band under Shellie Johnson's direction that backs up the singers well.

Relationship satire is always a good bet, but the tired sitcom beats in this revue disappoint. If only we could see what these actors could do with a more contemporary work.

"I Love You, You're Perfect, Now Change" at Swift Creek Mill Theatre through October 23

17401 US Rte. 1, South Chesterfield

Tickets $49, with discounts for seniors, military and students; dining available for $23

Info: swiftcreekmill.com or (804)748-5203


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