Dirty Dancing: The Classic Story on Stage (review)

Dirty Dancing: The Classic Story on Stage (review)
Dirty Dancing: The Classic Story on Stage (review)
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THE PLAY: This is a stage version of the 1987 movie about an innocent girl who goes with her family on summer vacation, where the resort’s dance instructor teaches her to dance (and more).


THE PRODUCTION: This isn’t really a musical, but a drama full of recorded radio hits. There is a band with a number of performers singing a line or two, but the only real on-stage vocals come from two soloists with powerful voices. The rest of the cast plays out the movie’s plot with acceptable skill. The first act zips by with lots of musical interludes, but Act Two drags from all the dramatic interactions. This isn’t really a reimagining, because there’s not much imagination. With the exception of the flashy dancing, most of the staging plays out in a straightforward style. The most impressive part of the set is a gorgeous mountain vista. There are some other scenic elements and a “curtain of planks” to echo the cabin motif, but the design isn’t especially attractive. There’s lots of colorful lighting to add pizzazz. Running time: 2:30


THE POINT: If the enthusiastically vocal audience reaction is any indication, fans of the film will be thrilled to see it come alive on stage. If you’re seeking a creative theatrical experience, this is less than that.


3 out of 5 stars (3 / 5)


Presented by Broadway in Richmond at the Altria Theater thru 4/1


Aaron Patrick Craven and the 2018 cast of Dirty Dancing. (Photos by Jeremy Daniel)

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