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Theater review: “Guys and Dolls” at Town and Country doesn’t disappoint

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For a rollicking good time, head for the Town and Country Players’ performances of “Guys and Dolls” this weekend and next. The popular Buckingham theater company has opened its 75th season celebration with the classic Broadway musical that is definitely a crowd pleaser. A lengthy show at more than three hours including intermission, its familiar songs first delighted audiences 72 years ago. Among the best in the show is “Sit Down, You’re Rockin’ the Boat,” with an amazing performance by Sean Downing as Nicely-Nicely Johnson and the ensemble. Downing not only sings the part well, he whizzes around the stage with impressive energy and enthusiasm during his dance with the ensemble. While his performance is a standout, there are plenty of others to enjoy in the show. The two female leads, Patricia Curley as Sgt. Sarah Brown and Kallie Cooper as Miss Adelaide, steal the hearts of the audience more than once during their performances. Curley, who impressed Town and Country audiences as Laurey in “Oklahoma” several years ago, is lovely as the leader of a band of reformers who want to save the souls of the gamblers who can be found on New York City’s Broadway. Her tremendous range as a singer is on display in duets with Jim Morris as love interest Sky Masterson, and with Cooper. Cooper, who is new to Town and Country audiences, is a delight as the Broadway babe who captured the heart of Nathan Detroit, played by Michael Schiumo, but can’t quite capture his hand in marriage. Morris and Schiumo are well up to the task of holding their own with their leading ladies; they sing well and both couples show amazing chemistry as they perform together. Hats off to the ensemble as well, taking over various roles with energy and style. Pulling it all together is director Sheldon Bruce Zeff along with producer Anne Hauck, musical director Sue den Outer and choreographer Erin Wurtz. “Guys and Dolls” is a massive production, and yet they make it seem as smooth as silk. In many ways, “Guys and Dolls” is an old-fashioned love story, times two. Anyone who enjoys Broadway music, community theater, a good time and happy endings can find it all this weekend and next at Town and Country’s theater in the round. Shows continue through May 7. See townandcountryplayers.org for information.


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