by Lorie Lewis Ham
If you enjoy musical theatre then you don’t want to miss the Kings Players production of 50 Years of Broadway, currently on stage at the Temple Theatre in Hanford. This show was put together in honor of the Kings Players 50th year of producing plays.
50 Years of Broadway, simply put, is just what the title suggests, musical numbers from some of the big musicals over the past 50 years–touching on every decade from the 60s to 2013. The show begins with Janice Noga’s rendition of “Hello Dolly”, from the 1964 show with the same name. From there it jumps across the decades to Mama Mia! from 1999, to Annie from 1977, and Phantom of the Opera from 1986, continuing with numbers from 23 different shows in all and ending with a full cast rendition of “Seasons of Love” from Rent. This is all done with a minimal set, with the focus on the music, choreography, and fun costumes. The 40 performers also range in age from those that have been with the Kings Players for 50 years, to the very young.
Just a few of some of the other shows represented are Hairspray, Spring Awakening, The Lion King, Wicked and Pippin. Some of the standout numbers included Jay Salyer’s beautiful performance of “Bring Him Home” from Les Miserables, Nicole Devol (who also music directs the show) and Corey Ralston (who directs the show) in “Suddenly Semour” from Little Shop of Horrors, a group of lovely ladies performing “Cell Block Tango” from Chicago, and Henry Gonzales, Joseph Troncozo, Auggie Hernandez and Christa Van Gemert in a hilarious performance of “Puttin’ On The Ritz” from Young Frankenstein. Not only are there a lot of great shows represented in 50 Years of Broadway, but there are some great voices, and the entire show was just plain fun! Extra kudos to Corey and Nicole, as I can’t imagine what a challenge it must have been to put together such a variety of different numbers.
50 Years of Broadway is selling out fast and only has two more weekends to go, so be sure to call and make your reservations: (559) 584-7241. It’s definitely worth the trek to Hanford and the very reasonable ticket price of only $12. For more info check out their website and KRL’s local theatre event page. Temple Theatre is located at 514 E. Visalia Street–if you have never been there before you may want to ask for directions when you reserve your tickets, as it can be a little tricky to find.
Check out more theatre reviews & other local arts and entertainment articles in our Arts & Entertainment section.