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Theatre review: Crazy for You 
28th-Nov-2011 11:15 pm
Every year there's rumours that the Open Air Theatre's annual musical will get a West End transfer, and this year it's actually done so (albeit to God's Waiting Room For Musicals, the Novello.) Crazy for You, first seen on Broadway in 1992, is an extended version of the 1930 Gershwin musical Girl Crazy and features more than its share of standards - "Someone To Watch Over Me," "Embraceable You," "I Got Rhythm," "They Can't Take That Away From Me" and ""Nice Work If You Can Get It." Bobby (the BARROWMANesque Sean Palmer) is the son of wealthy bankers but only wants to be a Broadway star. Partly to escape his fiancée (Kim Medcalf) he agrees to a trip to an almost-abandoned Nevada town to foreclose on the local theatre. But once there he falls for the owner's daughter Polly (Clare Foster) and hatches a plan to impersonate Broadway impresario Bela Zangler and put on a fund-raising show starring the locals. Things are complicated when Polly falls for his alter ego and when the real Zangler (David Burt) arrives in town, leading to the evening's funniest scene between Palmer and Burt.

Timothy Sheader's production is energetic and nicely utilises Peter McKintosh's attractive set on a large revolve. Foster is a likeable female lead although in tonight's performance it once or twice sounded as if she was having some throat problems. James O'Connell stood out from the ensemble with his acrobatic dancing, Vanessa commenting that his dancing was better than the lead's. Fans of tap-dancing will enjoy it, the show's inoffensive fun that's apparently been a popular hit in past recessions and will be hoping to do the same in this one.

Crazy for You by George Gershwin, Ira Gershwin and Ken Ludwig is booking until the 28th of July at the Novello Theatre.
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