Friday, February 24, 2012

Letter to Walker School's Cast of Xanadu

(response to a performance of the stage musical XANADU, a pastiche of songs recorded by ELO and Olivia-Newton John.  Book by Doulas Carter Beane, music and lyrics by Jeff Lynne and John Farrar, based on the Universal Pictures film.  Director and Choreographer Katie Arjona.)


You made my face hurt from smiling so long!  I admit I came to the show a skeptic, remembering the blandness of those early 80s songs.   I feared that seeing the lights rise on that fabulous set might be a high point of the evening.

Then Justin's warmth and energy and strong voice generated good feeling right away; the Muses' unison jokes and choreography loosened me up;  Georgie's fresh voice and persona (somehow combining winking irony with naivety) won me over.

All of that happened before I laughed myself silly at Eleni and Olivia in "Evil Woman," only to be left breathless by the dance in "Whenever You're Away From Me," and touched by our musicians' big band sounds and McLain's suave crooning.  The melding of Andrews' Sisters – I saw them live, by the way – and the metal boys  was unexpected and a great musical / staging coup! 

Overall, I felt a spirit of teamwork and friendship from you all that washed over the audience, and I left refreshed.  Today I awoke singing "I'm Alive!"

I was a skeptic; now I'm a believer.  Thank you!

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