adam wolf (Adamwolf)
Post Number: 200
|Posted on Friday, December 28, 2007 - 8:04 am: |
A review of the Cincinnati show of S12 (done NOT by GL)
Still wondering what to do on New Year's Eve?
New Stage Collective has a suggestion for how to start the evening. Over-the-Rhine's newest resident theater company presents the Cincinnati premiere of 75-minute, alternative rock/theatrical entertainment "Striking 12" through, appropriately, New Year's Eve.
It's a "holiday show for people who don't like holiday shows," says Alan Patrick Kenny, New Stage artistic director, "Striking 12" music director and keyboard player. "Striking 12" is subtitled "a rewired version of Hans Christian Andersen's 'The Little Match Girl,' " and Kenny calls the show a hybrid, with a theatrical storyline underpinning a concert.
The deliriously hip holiday entertainment takes the sad, sad New Year's Eve story of "The Little Match Girl" as inspiration and swings it into the contemporary tale of a grumpy office worker (Kenny) who, dumped by his fiancée, is date-less for the big night.
He is visited by a Goth-y door-to-door light bulb saleswoman (Lara Courtney, who does the show's primary vocals) and through a very nice set of songs by GrooveLily, the story sets off on a clever (and satisfactorily heart-wrenching) musical riff on a story that most of us have forgotten.
Seriously - beyond the image of a ragged little girl on a street corner, how much of Andersen's story do you remember?
"Striking 12" has been charming audiences since its 2002 debut. The New York Times called it "thoroughly winning! More artfully crafted and engaging than virtually all the standard-mold musicals these days. Alive with wit and humor."
The third member of the acting trio (fronting a three-piece back-up band) is Mikhail Roberts, CCM drama senior who takes top performance honors doing double duty as actor/singer and little drummer boy. Music seems to be a serious sideline for Roberts, who in addition to working percussion in "Striking 12" also provided guitar accompaniment in CCM's "Anon(ymous)" in autumn.