Friday, March 13, 2009

Hello, Dolly! - 5th Avenue Theatre

Hello, Dolly!

The 5th Avenue Theatre

Tickets and Information

March 7 – 29, 2009

Hello, Dolly!, brought to us by the legendary composer and lyricist Jerry Herman (Mac and Mable, La Cage) and book writer Michael Stewart (Bye Bye, Birdie!, Carnival!, 42nd Street), comes vividly to life under the direction of David Armstrong at the 5th Avenue Theatre for the remainder of March. This Golden-Age-of-Broadway spectacular, always a classic and a favorite of all Broadway buffs, is a vibrant testament to the splendor of which the 5th Ave is capable as well as what it means to be of the Golden Age of Broadway.

Jennifer Lewis and the cast of Hello, Dolly! photo by Chris Bennion

Jennifer Lewis (Hairspray, Mother Courage and her Children with Meryl Streep and countless more) stars as the matron of matrimony herself, Dolly Gallagher Levi and does it with grace and panache not many could match. With a powerhouse voice and inspiring poignancy, Lewis truly rocks Seattle. Supported by a magically strong cast of Seattle’s finest as well as nationally renowned talent, the show comes together like a dream. Playing opposite Lewis is Pat Cashman (Horace Vandergelder perhaps known for his work as the announcer in Nintendo’s Super Smash Brothers Brawl!), a powerhouse himself! With these two dynamos at the lead, the show naturally follows suit. Other standouts must include Greg McCormick Allen as Cornelius and Suzanne Bouchard as Irene Mallow who bring an undeniably heart-warming presence to the stage.

David Armstrong’s direction, too, is absolutely fabulous. His Midas touch shines again with this hit show. Surrounded with some of the most spectacular costumes Seattle will see this Spring (James Schuette), the show literally glows.

One must keep in mind that it is a Golden Age show, which at times can send the jokes sailing right past a modern audience. Some of the built-in laugh-holds go amiss when the audience lacks a solid 1970’s sensibility. However, this is a small consideration when pitted against an overall fantastic production.

Keep your eyes peeled for more from the 5th Avenue as they conclude this season with Sunday in the Park with George and Grease followed by a spectacular new season in the works for 2009-2010 (see our updates for details) and make sure not to miss this classic bit of Broadway history: Hello, Dolly!

Review by Nigel Andrews

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