BWW Review: SOMETHING ROTTEN! Is Something Spectacular!
Facing an all-too-short run at ASU Gammage (the road tour ends November 5th and moves on to Costa Mesa), there's no time to waste before declaring that SOMETHING ROTTEN! is spectacular! Pure platinum!
Conceived by Karey and Wayne Kirkpatrick (who also wrote the music and lyrics for this 2017 Tony nominee), the triple-barreled homage to Shakespeare (extolled as a rock idol of his time), the glories and follies of the Broadway musical, and two wannabe superstars of the Renaissance stage explodes into an exhilarating multidimensional rush of stunning proportions.
From the moment that Nick Rashad Burroughs ignites the house with an electrifying Welcome to the Renaissance, the show is a splendid nonstop concatenation of music (Brian P. Kennedy), choreography (Casey Nicholaw), sets (Scott Pask), and wardrobe (Gregg Barnes). Nicholaw's flawless direction leaves no theatrical stone unturned.
At the center of this whirlwind are the sterling performances of Rob McClure (on fire from start to finish) and Josh Grisetti as the aspiring playwrights Nick and Nigel Bottom, who conjure up a new concept in theatre ~ the musical! ~ that, in turn, will take shape in the staging of Omelette!, thanks to the counsel of soothsayer Thomas Nostradamus (gleefully portrayed by Blake Hammond), and thus grant them the means to get a leg up on The Bard. Adam Pascal (Rent, Aida, Memphis) is terrific as a less than honorable Shakespeare, ever one step ahead of the Bottom brothers.
There's no shortage of performances to praise in this rollicking production: Maggie Lakis as Bea, Nick's wife (Rob's real wife in real life) and feminist-in-the-making; Autumn Hurlbert as Portia, the Puritan daughter of the tightly laced Brother Jeremiah (Scott Cote); Jeff Brooks as a wheeling and dealing version of Shylock. The entire ensemble is tremendous.
SOMETHING ROTTEN! runs through November 5th at ASU Gammage in Tempe, AZ.
Photo credit to Jeremy Daniel