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BWW Review: SINGIN' IN THE RAIN Splashes into the Massey Theatre with its Toe Tapping Tunes

BWW Review: SINGIN' IN THE RAIN Splashes into the Massey Theatre with its Toe Tapping Tunes

Extravagant tap dancing numbers, incredible singing, and breathtaking set pieces were a few things that I got to witness at the Massey Theatre on Saturday night. The Royal City Musical Theatre's production of SINGIN' IN THE RAIN performed another round of shows this weekend at the Massey Theatre in New Westminster, B.C. Playing from April 4-20, SINGIN' IN THE RAIN tells the story of film stars Don Lockwood and Lina Lamont with the rise of "talking pictures" in Hollywood. Filled with romance, drama, and comedy, SINGIN' IN THE RAIN takes us back in time to experience what the the movie industry was like in the late 1920s.

BWW Review: SINGIN' IN THE RAIN Splashes into the Massey Theatre with its Toe Tapping TunesDirected and choreographed by Valerie Easton, this production truly exceeded my expectations. Compared to the other shows I've seen this year, SINGIN' IN THE RAIN had the perfect combination of dialogue and musical numbers. The transitions between scenes were some of the best I've ever seen in a production. The set design by Brian Ball is what really made everything on stage so smooth, complimenting the cast's acting perfectly. From the beginning of the show taking place outside the Chinese Theatre to the inside of the filming studio, the high quality sets made the audience feel as though they travelled back in time to the late 1920s. Time travel was also made possible by the costumes by Christopher David Gauthier. As SINGIN' IN THE RAIN has a very large cast, Gauthier correlated each cast member's costume to each other very well and I really appreciated the details in each piece. With the frequent costume changes throughout the scenes, the audience was able to experience Gauthier's costuming magic that tied the entire production together. Another aspect of the show that impressed me was the sound design by Malcolm Ross. A lot of shows struggle with having a good balance between the orchestra and the actor's mics. I did not have an issue with that for this production. Sitting in the orchestra section of the theatre, I had no trouble hearing the actor's singing over the orchestral music. With the exceptional balance of sound, there were a lot of moments in the show that involved complicated sound usage and mixing. Every point of sound used in these scenes was well placed and perfectly timed. You could tell that the production team of this show went above and beyond to make the production special.

BWW Review: SINGIN' IN THE RAIN Splashes into the Massey Theatre with its Toe Tapping TunesThe cast of SINGIN' IN THE RAIN was truly remarkable. What impressed me from both the featured cast and the ensemble was their singing and dancing (especially tap dancing) abilities. You could tell from the quality singing and complex tap dance numbers that each and every member of the cast was multi-talented. Andrew Cohen was the perfect Don Lockwood. His charisma and charm was fitted for his role. At the end of Act 1, Cohen sang and danced through the popular song "Singin' In The Rain." Cohen's seamless voice and energy on stage had the whole audience clapping along with excitement. Blake Sartin played Cosmo Brown and really stood out for me with his dancing. During his solo number "Make 'Em Laugh," Sartin was bursting at the seams with energy. His sharp, precise movements and quick toe-tapping feet were very exciting to watch. Tessa Trach played lovable Kathy Selden in the show. The first thing that drew me to her character was her voice. Her warm voice filled the entire theatre when she sang and left me completely speechless. Trach's poise and elegant stage presence lent itself beautifully to her character. One of my favorite numbers in the show was "Good Morning" sung by Lockwood, Brown, and Selden. This well-known tune had the audience smiling all the way through and showed off the vocal range and dancing abilities of the 3 leads perfectly. In addition to the leads, the ensemble also stood out for me throughout the whole production. This was particularly present in the number "Broadway Melody" featuring the leads and the ensemble. This song contained lengthy dance numbers that involved complicated tap dance patterns. The entire cast danced with such precise synchronicity and passion, the whole audience was left in awe. What I really enjoyed about the entire cast was that you could really tell that each and every cast member was having fun on stage and really enjoying the moment. With both the energy from the cast members and audience, SINGIN' IN THE RAIN was a truly memorable and visceral experience.

Looking at the production as a whole, it was excellent. Reflecting on my experience, I couldn't think of anything that I did not like about it. Although, the audience was comprised mostly of an older demographic, this show is appropriate for the entire family! The upbeat songs, amazing dance numbers, and humor used in the show left me wanting more! As this show took place in the late 1920s, SINGIN' IN THE RAIN also incorporated black and white movies in the show, which were projected onto a large screen that rolled up and down from the ceiling. I thought that these black and white movies were a very nice touch to the production and was a contributing factor to the show's originality. Furthermore, during Lockwood's solo number "Singin' In The Rain," an added touch of "sparkle" was added to the scene, which left the audience gleaming with amazement. Once again, I absolutely loved everything about this show hope that many more people get to experience the magic before it closes on April 20th!

SINGIN' IN THE RAIN is currently playing at the Massey Theatre in New Westminster from April 4th to 20th. Tickets are available at the Massey Ticket Centre by calling 604-521-5050 or visiting MasseyTheatre.com.

Photo Credit: Tim Matheson, 2019


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