Thursday, December 24, 2009
Monday, December 21, 2009
Friday, December 18, 2009
A.) The summer capital of Kublai Khan’s Yuan empire
B.) The subject of a poem by Samuel Taylor Coleridge
C.) A 1980’s cult classic starring Olivia Newton-John and Gene Kelly
D.) An irreverent musical based on the 1980’s film of the same name
E.) All of the above
If you selected choice E.) you are correct. And if you happen to have the chance to glide on over to the Orange County Performing Arts Center between now and December 27, you’ll have the chance to check out this incredibly wacky, yet disarmingly endearing musical.
Centering on the story of a muse and a lost artist, Xanadu the musical is itself based on the 1980’s film described above. A cult classic, and one that I was introduced to at an early age, the film is corny, campy, and fun.
Xanadu the musical looks to capture the same level of “cheesiness” and build on it with a dizzying mix of sequins, glitter, dancing, and, of course, roller disco. It definitely succeeds in this respect and one can’t help but exit the theatre humming an ELO tune.
Much as if you saw Wicked without first seeing Wizard of Oz, without first seeing the Xanadu film you may find that some jokes are bit over your head. But fear not. The show is packed with enough jokes targeted at the 1980’s, musical theater, the arts, and Los Angeles that even a Xanadu novice will find themselves laughing hysterically.
A perfect cure for a dull winter evening, Xanadu is 90 minutes of pure, unadulterated entertainment. The cast is so committed that even the corniest gag solicits roars of laughter. The show is just plain ri-dic-u-lous. But I promise you’ll love it.
So skate – don’t walk – on over to OCPAC before it’s too late. Much like any good muse, Xanadu won’t be around forever.
Thursday, December 17, 2009
Below: photo of Clement Gosch and Albert Ramos with Elizabeth Stanley
Wednesday, December 16, 2009
Local families came to the Center last night to enjoy the first of three special Kids’ Night on Broadway for the hit musical Xanadu, which is kicking of its national tour in Orange County. In keeping with the show’s ‘80s theme, kids and their parents participated in fun retro activities, including disco dancing with cast members, playing video games and dress-up and much more before curtain time. As the pictures show, it was a groovy night. Kids’ Night on Broadway is being presented in collaboration with The Broadway League to help introduce young people to the excitement and wonder of live Broadway entertainment. The program offers parents who purchase one full-priced ticket a second free ticket free for a child between the ages of 8 and 18. Xanadu Kids’ Night on Broadway goes through Thursday, December 17. For more information click here.
Above: Playing dress-up were Carla, Camryn, Britney and Derek Hamaguchi from Aliso Viejo. Photo by Kevin Bohn.
Below: Cast member Kevin Duda taught Leslie and Heather Fiebleman of Newport Beach how to dance a routine from Xanadu.
Below: Siblings Jonny and Mackenzie Gomez from Rancho Palos Verdes hammed it up in the Xanadu cut-outs.
Tuesday, December 15, 2009
Click on the video above to watch a fun shoutout from Xanadu leads Elizabeth Stanley and Max Von Essen. Starting tonight, they’ll be performing in the smash-hit roller skating musical adventure, which runs here through December 27. With popular tunes such as “Magic,” “All Over the World,” “Suddenly,” “Have You Never Been Mellow” and “Evil Woman,” Xanadu is a welcome blast from the past. Good luck tonight, Elizabeth, Max and the rest of the cast and crew!