BC’s Crazy For You captivates audiences


Michelle Gross

The cast, crew and pit of BC’s fall musical Crazy For You created a magnificent show.

Téalin Robinson, Editor-In-Chief

The Tony Award winning musical Crazy for You is a slapstick romantic comedy complete with mistaken identity, plot twists, fabulous tap dance numbers, and a variety of classic Gershwin music. Suggested by the 1930’s Gershwin show, Girl Crazy, this 1992 musical full of contemporary rhythm was brought to life by BC’s theater department in their fall musical production, featured at the Sharon Lynne Wilson Center November 20-22.

Immediately following the thrilling overture by the pit, the curtain opens backstage at the magical Zangler Theatre in 1930’s New York. The last performance of the season for The Zangler Follies is wrapping up, and the wealthy, stage-stuck Bobby Child, played by the exuberant Thomas Kindler (‘16), fails to impress the hard Hungarian impresario Bela Zangler, Kevin Fuller (‘17), in an audition.

The plot switches from the sophisticated complexities of the scenery, which sweep up the audience from the glittery old Times Square lights and signs of Forty-Second street, to the wild west frontier. In the midst of a tug-a-war by his wealthy five year fiancée, Irene, Amber Soik (‘16), and his meddling mother, Mrs. Lottie Child, played by Sophie Michalski (‘18), who demands that Bobby carry out a piece of banking business in Nevada, Bobby imagines dancing with the Follies Girls and joins them in a rousing rendition of “I Can’t be Bothered Now.” Bobby escapes to the broke Deadrock mining town in Nevada to foreclose the bankrupt Gaiety Theatre there.

“It was amazing to see a group of high school students who had mostly never tapped before learn to tap and put on such a complicated show,” said Sarah Brown (‘16). “I thought everyone really stepped up to the challenge and performed admirably.”

The only woman left in this forlorn town is the spunky Polly Baker, played by the graceful Emma Borkowski (‘17) whose voice magnifies in “Someone to Watch Over Me” and “But Not for Me,” who vows to not let her theater go. Instantly falling in love, Bobby decides to save the theatre for Polly by “putting on a show,” deceiving all as the famous Zangler. With help from the Zangler Follies, the town throws itself into the making of a spectacular show.

During the spirited rendition of “I Got Rhythm”, which uplifts the town through intense tap choreography, the audience is in hysterics while the actual Zangler stumbles unnoticed into town, causing delightful confusion. This big Act I finale complete with homespun instruments such as washboards, leads with the drunken cowboys of Deadrock whipping up a torrent of music and merriment. Even more witty, was the ingenious scene in which Zangler, who came to Deadrock for Tess, shoots him down again. So the two Zanglers drown their sorrows in whiskey acting as rollicking mirror images of each other in “What Causes That.”

This artfully constructed musical is a firecracker of a comedy overall. Ludwig’s 1930’s style jokes never miss, reserving the most comical ones for the secondary characters. The cowboys make the show when the Wild West is first introduced, singing “Bidin’ My Time” in a monotone drawl. However, they immediately perk up at the sight of the long line of the gorgeous Zangler Follies, who are always glued to each other and appear like a desert mirage, giving the show a gleeful little touch. The group creatively constructs a visual jamboree in “Slap That Bass.”

“Being a Zangler Girl was one of the most fun roles I have ever played,” Brown added, “We got to dance and be on stage a ton with 6 different crazy costumes while still having enough time to connect to and goof around with the rest of the cast.”

The subplots’ are even finer since there wouldn’t be a fairytale plot without the antagonists and their burlesque humor. Lank Hawkins, played by Brett Fong (‘17), who is the sharply wound up owner of Deadrock’s only saloon who is seduced in “Naughty Baby” by the now ex-fiancée Irene, who’s shown up to expose Bobby. Finally the show wraps up neatly though with the optimistic rendition of “Stiff Upper Lip,” which creates a mountain of chairs that parallels the accelerating spirits in the midst of imaginative choreography.

Everyone had such a wonderful time putting together the production and coming together as a family – with some mishaps and rehearsal hilarity. Ashley Elbert (’16) said, “One of the best parts was when Thomas Kindler’s fake beard was falling off during the dress rehearsal and after a while he just took it off and ad-libbed: ‘By the way, I shaved.’”

Overall, BC’s production of the comical Crazy For You was such a success with beautifully choreographed numbers and emotional lyrics. “Every year it feels like we aren’t going to make it but we always do,” Elbert concluded. This year we got it together before the performances more than I think we ever have and we carried that through the shows.” Congratulations to the cast, pit and crew!