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Theatre Review (LA): Xanadu

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You will have to forgive me if you are covered in glitter after reading this review of Xanadu as presented by DOMA at the Met Theatre. Xanadu is based on the cult movie of the same name. It premiered at the La Jolla Playhouse (where I first saw it) and went on to play 500 performances and garnered awards from the Outer Critics Circle and Drama Desk Award as Best Musical. It was also nominated for two Tony Awards. The film starred Olivia Newton-John and Gene Kelly and was in turn based on a Rita Hayworth film, Down to Earth.

The show is an ingenious send-up by Douglas Carter Beane with music and lyrics by Jeff Lynne and John Farrar. The small band is directed by Chris Raymond with excellent choreography by Angela Todearo (although I would have liked to see more roller skating). Hallie Baran directs this madcap send-up. I won’t go into the silly plot here but know that it is indeed silly, featuring Greek Gods, roller skating, and an original hit score by pop/rock legends Lynne and Farrar with classic feel-good songs like “Magic,” “All Over The World,” “Suddenly,” “I’m Alive,” Evil Woman,” “Have You Never Been Mellow,” and the title song.

Lovlee Carroll stars as Greek muse Clio. She has a lovely presence and a terrific voice. Matt O’Neil is her costar. He is rather one-note at times but he too has a pleasant voice. They are supported by David Michael Trevino in the Gene Kelly part, and Veronica Scheyving, Brittany Rodin, Alan Lee, Taji Coleman, Lindsay Zana, and Bradley Sattler. There are many laughs for the two guys, Alan and Bradley, since they are playing women’s parts as men. Allyson Blackstone and Morgan Gallant are the two dancers. Lots of money was spent on this production and it shows in the set by Amanda Lawson and elaborate costume design by Michael Mullen.

Xanadu plays at The Met Theatre until Oct 7.

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About Robert Machray

  • luv2cook

    I thought the show was hoot. Though the acting was a bit to over the top for me and maybe I’m biased because I saw it on Broadway.

    The broadway cast was much funnier than this cast and way better singers. But this show is overall an entertaining treat.