Sunday, March 11, 2012

Plaza Theatre: Breaking Up is Hard To Do (reviews)

The Plaza Theatre opened its production of Breaking Up is Hard To Do on March 8, 2012.
Set in a Catskills resort in 1960, this is the sweetly comic story of Lois and Marge, two friends from Brooklyn in search of good times and romance over one wild Labor Day weekend. The score showcases 18 Neil Sedaka classics, including Where The Boys Are, Sweet Sixteen, Calendar Girl, Stupid Cupid, Solitaire, and of course, Breaking Up Is Hard To Do.
Kyle Ennis Turoff directed a cast that featured herself, Alana Opie, Jeff Gregg, Berry Ayres, Steve Carroll, and Missy McArdle.

Jan Sjostrom reviewed for the Palm Beach Daily News:
This production, which was imported from the Golden Apple Dinner Theatre in Sarasota, doesn’t pretend to be anything other than what it is — a cheeky, fun tale spun out Sedaka songs.
The musical, which was conceived by Marsh Hanson and Gordon Greenberg and written by Erik Jackson and Ben Winters, is full of punchlines that beg for a rimshot. Lois lets fall malapropisms such as “There are plenty of fish in the tree.”
Fortunately Turoff, who also directed and choreographed the show, steers it so that we laugh with the players, not at them. The deliveries are well-timed and so obviously tongue-in-cheek that it’s impossible not to smile.
Vocally, the show is a mixed bag. Berry Ayers, who portrays the resort’s gofer Gabe, and Opie are the only singers with rock-solid voices and deliveries suitable to the music’s style. ...the theater’s sound balance is off, and the off-stage band smothers the lesser singers.

Missy McArdle plays the resort owner Esther with an ethnic flourish. Steve Carroll demonstrates a gift for landing a punchline as the resort’s comedian Harvey.

The tacky set and ill-fitting costumes hint at penny-pinching. The obvious bottom line-watching dims, but doesn’t quite quench the show’s verve and sunny spirit.
Breaking Up Is Hard To Do plays at The Plaza Theatre through March 25, 2012.

1 comment:

  1. I saw this show last week-end and thoroughly enjoyed it. I almost felt like I was seeing a different show than that described in this review. There wasn't a weak voice in the cast and all played their roles well. The set fit the time/place for which it was intended and costuming seemed fine. It was great to see such a well done, fun production where it's obvious the cast is enjoying what they're doing! Thanks to the Golden Apple and to the Plaza Theatre for this experience.