In the past, Croswell has been the sole not-fully Equity regional theater that I have reviewed in this blog. I do so for a reason — they quite simply present the best musical theatre being produced on a non-professional (or educational, read University of Michigan) basis in the area.
I can’t do a full review for Damn Yankees because I left before intermission. This is sloppy work, and screams community theatre from the getgo. The continuity mistakes in turning the Washington Senators into the Detroit Tigers are consistent and the concept here does not work. I’ve seen this concept work once at the Huntington Playhouse in Bay Village, OH many years ago. It doesn’t work here in Adrian.
Costuming is poor, the sets passable at best, and the production numbers have no life. The (very small) men’s ensemble tries. It tries hard. It does not succeed. The women fare better overall. The sound, as it has been all summer, was poor.
The show comes to life only when Mark DiPietro appears, He is superb as Applegate. Sorry, Mark — I couldn’t make it through this (long) show.
Damn Yankees strikes out. It’s a cliche. But its an apt cliche for this production. Looking forward to future performances at Croswell, but I can’t recommend this one.