I will be totally honest and tell you that my real motivation in purchasing tickets to this show, currently in previews as of November 18th, was the star power and my own personal affinity for Tony Danza. Yes, I was swayed by my youthful crush on Mr. Danza from his "Who's the Boss" and "Taxi" days. And, let me assure you, I enjoyed every moment of his performance as Tommy Korman, the powerful Vegas gambler.
The storyline, of course remains the same, as Jack Singer, played by Rob McClure, the commitment phobic boyfriend, finally agrees to take the plunge into marrying his long-time girlfriend, Betsey Nolan (Brynn McNalley) with a spur of the moment trip to Vegas to elope. Smitten with Betsey, who bears a striking resemblance to his deceased wife, Tommy Korman (Tony Danza), orchestrates a rigged poker game, in order to have Jack pay for his losses with his fiancé, Betsey.
And so the story goes with its ups and downs (literally!) as Jack attempts to recapture his bride to be away from the smooth talking Korman.
This is one of the few shows on Broadway right now that is a good choice for kids as well. I brought my two daughters (8 and 10) to see this along with my "Travelin' Cousin" Tanya and her son and daughter (16 and 13). With its bright and colorful stage design, resounding and upbeat music by Tony-winner Jason Robert Brown and slapstick comedic affects, my kids were laughing throughout the production. No foul language either, which was an added bonus!
Story - Check; Music - Check. Now, let's talk about the performances. The cast was a tight-knit group of performers who brought this story to life with dance and larger than life characterizations and chemistry.
What a joy for me to see Mr. Danza live on stage. He was just delightful in his tough, yet charming role. Who knew he had such a nice singing voice! He even surprised me with his soft-shoe tap dancing! The only negative could arguably be his playing the "bad guy" with his good looks and charming demeanor, but then again, I'm a bit prejudice! To me, he's still the boss, even on Broadway!
Mr. McClure was endearing as the neurotic, protagonist switching off between humor, and song and dance, playing opposite Ms. O'Malley, whose voice was alluring and performance engaging.
A definite thumbs up for a high-flying good time!
Now, for me, the highlight for all of my Broadway excursions is waiting by the stage door for the cast to exit. My kids cannot imagine seeing a show without this exciting experience to top off the evening. So, off we went to wait...Right up in front we managed to get autographs from the show's three leads, as well as snap some pictures with them!