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Kinky Boots on Broadway is abso-friggin-fantabulous (review) March 23, 2013

Posted by ronannarbor in Uncategorized.
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Take one part Hairspray and one part The Full Monty. Mix together and add in generous helpings of Priscilla, La Cage, and sprinkle it all with tasty performances and shiny design work. Finally, douse it all in a superior score by Cyndi Lauper and strong script by Harvey Fierstein. Season to taste with Jerry Mitchell’s fabulous direction and choreography.  What you get is one abso-friggin-fantabulous concoction at the Hirschfield theatre.

An energetic and excellent cast leads you through a strong book musical concerning the rescue of a men’s shoe factory after four generations by the son Charlie Price (Stark Sands in another standout roll) by converting its product to kinky boots made especially for drag queens. Enter Tony-worthy Billy Porter as Lola and the stage is set.

The production numbers here soar, especially the Act One closer  “Everybody Say Yeah” choreographed using moving conveyor belts. But where the show also shines is in the more intimate moments — there is a lot of heart beneath the glitz, and it all feels natural.

Ultimately the show finds its voice in the theme of “accept who you are” but it comes from the most unexpected of places — and the audience tears come quickly, followed by a big Hairspray-like final number that had the audience cheering. In fact, I can’t remember the last time I’ve seen an audience have this kind of ecstatic reaction throughout a show.

In a year when Matilda will most likely draw the most Tony wins due to its sheer scope and family-friendliness, I’ll be rooting for Kinky Boots. With the best score I’ve heard in a Broadway show in years, Cyndi Lauper should go ahead and write her acceptance speech right now.

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