Theater Preview: 42ND STREET (3-D Theatricals)

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by Frank Arthur on October 11, 2018

in Theater-Los Angeles


Call us saps or suckers but we can’t, it seems, get enough of “The Understudy Who Becomes A Star.” Not when the sweet and satisfying story is stuffed with thrills like “Shuffle Off to Buffalo” and “Young and Healthy.” Some clichés justify themselves, if only because nothing less than hokey can fill the sentiment completely.

When Busby Berkeley’s 1933 film classic 42nd Street (with added songs from the catalog of Harry Warren and Al Dubin added to their already superb score) became in 1980 a successful, Tony-winning musical (the last offering from the great Gower Champion), it proved you don’t need a Depression to justify a good time (though, thanks to the 1%, the number “We’re in the Money,” with its giant rolling coins, sounds more like wishful thinking than ever).

85 years later, Peggy Sawyer, the tap-dancing chorus girl from Allentown who makes it big on the Great White Way, replays her all-American success story in an upcoming revival, which is sure to have enough pizzazz to electrify Times Square. It’s a perfect outing for the 10th Season of 3-D Theatricals, which has proved time and again that a local company can and does consistently best all those pre-fab national tours. Now, this estimable outfit will be exclusively be at the Cerritos Center for the Performing Arts, where 42nd Street begins tomorrow, October 12, and plays through October 28, 2018.

And starring as Julian Marsh – the no-nonsense, tough-as-nails producer – is the legendary Davis Gaines, the longest-running Phantom on Broadway. The inimitable Mr. Gaines was spectacular in 3-D’s gripping revival of Parade. “The Lullaby of Broadway” will never sound sweeter. This tribute to the “glittering gulch” of Times Square is as fine a hymn to showbiz solidarity and team spirit as A Chorus Line.

Expect extravagant and lavish dance numbers with choreography that will be much of the same iconic choreography, but jazzed up and energized by the amazing choreographer, Kami Seymour Martin. Yes, there will be iconic hoofing, but I know that Martin will kickline all-new magic into the dance numbers. Above all, there’s the tap dancing, the heartbeat of happiness. In “Keep Young and Beautiful,” “With Plenty of Money and You,” “There’s a Sunny Side to Ev’ry Situation,” and “I Only Have Eyes for You,” this special step fuses effortless aplomb with a degree of difficulty to rival any corps de ballet’s tandem arabesques. It’s the perfect exponent and incarnation of the youth and hunger of driven dancers — both in 1933 and 2018. Shuffle off to Cerritos.

photos courtesy of 3-D Theatricals

42nd Street
3-D Theatricals
Cerritos Center for the Performing Arts
18000 Park Plaza Drive in Cerritos
ends on October 28, 2018
for tickets, call 714.589.2770 or visit 3-D

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