Reviews of Crazy for You from Combinations........Cambridge Evening News.......Curtain Call........(reproduced with kind permission)
After last year's offering of OKLAHOMA!
my feelings about other Festival Player's productions was
"follow that". Well, follow that they certainly did,
fulfilling their publicity promise of an "all singing, all
dancing all Gershwin" show.
Cambridge Evening News 11 June 2003
CRAZY FOR YOU
I don't normally comment on the venue when reviewing a production and I don't intend to go on about one now, but, I will say that I was very disappointed with the Mumford Theatre's attitude before the production, as well as their attitude afterwards. This is no reflection on the Festival Players - all events were out of their control, however, I shall be very reluctant to visit that particular Cambridge Theatre in the future. If you're planning to visit this theatre, then be prepared for the parking problems!
Crazy for You is fairly popular with amateur groups and hence I have seen it before, however, this production was not a disappointment. Briefly it tells the story of Bobby Childs from a rich family in New York. Bobby does not want to enter the family business - he wants to be on the stage. He ends up being sent to Deadrock which only has one woman, who he promptly falls for whilst pretending to be Bela Zangler. This duality prompts a wonderful duet between Bobby and Zanger including a wonderful mirror acting scene which was superbly executed by Dave Smithet as Bobby and Michael Husband as Zangler.
This is not a show where I can mention every member of the cast, which is a pity as all were superb from the Cowboy trio of Simon Merrington, Bob Croft and Matt Gregory to Polly Baker (the one woman in question) played by Claire Crofts.
The acting, singing and dancing skills of everyone on the stage was excellent and the set very effective (although moving the set was a little noisy when acting was occurring front of tabs). The props were also good, including a very convincing ancient vacuum cleaner!
I was a little concerned about the microphones being used and wonder if there were technical problems at this particular show. There were several occasions when the music (which was excellent) drowned out the words of the singing. I was also unsure of the point of having such a bright light directed straight at the audience at the beginning of the show - I wasn't the only audience member who found it uncomfortable.
All in all an excellent show, with all cast members working well together and entertaining the audience.
Jane Dickerson Shinn
Copyright Jane Dickerson Shinn. This article first appeared in the August 2003 edition of Curtain Call, the magazine for amateur theatre in East Anglia.