Thursday, December 27, 2012

Anything Goes Musical @ Ahmanson Theatre

Photo via Center Theatre Group

Cole Porter songs.  Check.
Nautical setting.  Check.
Wanting to see Anything Goes because of my love for Midnight in Paris (one of my favorite films of last year), Boardwalk Empire, and the time period in general.  Triple check.

Jennio and I attended the Friday 12/7 performance and sat in the balcony, where a few other younger folks could afford to sit.  I was mostly there for the music, so I didn't mind the distance.  And fortunately, the acting, dancing, and humor made for a wonderful musical. 

Seeing the show for the first time, I imagined Reno Sweeney would have a voice more characteristic of Cole Porter's singing.  Although, Rachel York is very talented, her vocal style didn't quite sit right with me.   I much prefer Sutton Foster's vibrant voice on the Anything Goes 2011 cast album.  In the current run of the musical, Erich Bergen (playing Billy Crocker) does have the perfect voice for Porter's songs, but Alex Finke's (Hope Harcourt) singing was a bit quiet for me, especially during her duets (I could barely hear her voice).  

However absorbing the show was, there was one scene "that really took me out of it" (to quote the girl next to me).  During the couples dance number in It's De-lovely, it was hard to appreciate the lovely choreography when I could hear the abnormally loud "ee er ee er" of the squeaky floorboards.  I had to try hard to stifle my laughter along with a few other people in the audience.  I wonder if anyone sitting closer to the stage had to do the same. 

Song's Stuck in My Head:
  • You're the Top
  • Friendship
  • It's De-Lovely
  • Anything Goes