Written by Stanley Greenberg Friday, 05 April 2013 00:00
The LIRR train was packed with happy young people, all dressed up for the St. Patrick’s Day Parade. One guy was wearing a kilt, and everyone else seemed to be wearing bright green.
Lorraine and I were going to see the new show Kinky Boots: honestly, we had no idea what to expect. The show was still in previews, opening for reviews on April 4. The Al Hirschfield Theater on 45th Street quickly filled and seating was completely sold out for the performance.
Harvey Fierstein wrote the script and Cyndi Lauper the music and lyrics. The show was based on the motion picture of the same name. Between Fierstein’s insights and Cyndi Lauper’s upbeat musical sound, how could they miss?
All about shoes, the story was brilliant and so was the score. A father requests that his son take over his shoe business. The son, though close with his father, says no at first. Then he meets Lola, a sparkling character, inspiring him to go into the ladies boot business. The singing and dancing were outstanding; Stark Sands and Billy Porter were born for these roles.
Never in the history of my theater-going have I seen the audience rise up so quickly as the curtain came down for a standing ovation. The story gets into you after a while and you are completely captured by the staging, acting, singing, dancing and the heart of this show.
On the Sunday of St. Patrick’s Day weekend, we had breakfast with friends and hurried off to Hofstra University to see another show at the 64th Annual Hofstra Shakespeare Festival. The show was Antony and Cleopatra.
It is a great love story, beautifully acted with gorgeous costumes and Shakespearian dialogue. These college kids put on a professional performance and we were treated to a bit of history as the show explored the relationship between the Roman, Antony, and his Egyptian lover, Cleopatra. The story takes place between 41 B.C.E. and 30 B.C.E., when Antony loses to Octavius in the famous sea battle at Actium.
It was a fabulous weekend of theater featuring two diverse offerings. We enjoyed both productions.