ATI's "Forbidden Broadway " Is Back with the Laughs! reviewed by Doug
Actors Theatre of Indiana has returned with the crowd pleaser" Forbidden Broadway's Greatest Hits Vol. 1 " to the Mansion at Oak Hill in Carmel. This energetic cabaret revue created by Gerard Alessandrini spoofs show tunes and characters from Broadway shows.There have been various versions of this show that change and are updated to reflect the new arrivals on Broadway. ATI playfully mocks "Annie", "Chicago", "Beauty and the Beast", "Lion King" and Phantom of the Opera" and other musicals during the evening's entertainment. Stars of the stage such as Liza Minnelli and Ethel Merman are also loving jabbed in many of the shows hilarious vignettes. You don't have to be a theatre aficionado to get the many jokes and bits in this production.In this version many of the parodied shows have toured through Indiana or are staples of the local theatre scene.
The talent for this show is first rate with the Cynthia Collins,Gary Wayne DeMumbrum, Don Farrell and Judy Fitzgerald as the Leading Players.Supporting this wacky quartet are Jeremy Cales as Stage Manager and Nathan Perry on piano. I was told that Nathan was filling in for his brother but the show ran so smoothly not one audience member would have guessed it.
Having performed in "Forbidden Broadway" many times himself, director Billy Kimmel knows how to keep the music and jokes moving at the speed of light. This show is a workout for the actors in front of the curtain as well as backstage with the many costume and wigs changes they handle all by themselves. Each of the performers have their own shining moments throughout the review. Fitzgerald's powerful vocal impersonation of Barbra Streisand wowed us all. Don Farrell showed his range with his comedic takes of a lipstick smeared Caroll Channing in "Dolly Is a Girl's Best Friend" to his ego driven Mandy Patinkin in "Somewhere Over Indulgence". Cynthia Collins showed off her dance flexability in the parody of "Chicago", made a delightful Mary Martin in "I"m Never Never Panned', and spoofing of Belle in "Beauty and the Beast" in "Beauty's Been Decreased" had me laughing from the start. The crowd laughed until they hurt with Gary DeMumbrum's phantom singing " Mucuous of the Night" and his comical feline singing "I Enjoy Being a Cat".
My favorte spoofs of the evening involved all the players in numbers from "Lion King" and Les Miserables. Creator Alessandrini is at his witty best in "This Song's Too High " and "On My Phone" from "Les Miz". Disney got some sharp barbs in "The Circle Of Mice" and "Can You Feel the Pain Tonite" from "Lion King".
Just a few comments on the venue.If you've never been to the Mansion at Oak Hill you are in for a treat. The house and grounds are lovely and well cared for in this southern plantation. The food and service is top drawer in every way. A couple at our table who had driven in from St. Louis for this show were very impressed with their evening with ATI. We all know that summer will soon be over and so will "Forbidden Broadway" so order your tickets before it's too late! The remaining shows are Wednesday August 5,12,19 and 26 and bonus Thursday shows August 6 and 27.
For info contact
Jennifer Zehr at (317) 843-9850
Mansion at Oak Hill 5801 E 116th St Carmel ,Indiana
Last edited by IndyanaTekkie; 08-03-2009 at 10:54 AM.
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