by Lorie Lewis Ham
Check out a video interview with the cast at the end of this review!
Of the multitude of theatre gracing the Valley this month, the first show we are reviewing is Ordinary Days, presented by Organic Theater Factory in Fresno. Since it only has one more weekend left, I encourage you to rush over to see it!I love the fact that OTF tends to do lesser known musicals. I get to see shows that I not only have never seen but get introduced to ones I’ve never even heard of. Such is the case with this December’s offering of Ordinary Days, an emotional and fun musical about four people living in New York. The show let’s us peek into the lives of four New York City residents–Jason, Claire, Deb and Warren. Jason and Claire have a relationship that Jason hopes is moving to the next level and we watch as they struggle with issues and baggage–some of which we don’t fully understand until nearly the end of the show. Deb is an intense, cynical student searching for her true “Big Picture”, who through a twist of fate gets to know the young artist/cat sitter Warren who is at first glance a happy go lucky, easygoing person who makes quite the contrast to Deb’s intensity and anger.
OTF director Anthony Taylor presents this show at the small venue known as The Voice Shop with almost no props or set–and yet they are never missed. This show is about its people and their journeys. Their love and hate of New York and of life. Ordinary Days makes you laugh and makes you cry and is far more emotionally intense than I ever expected when I walked through the Voice Shop door. It is also a beautiful show–with lovely, often touching, songs and some of the best talent the Valley has to offer–Ashley Taylor, Terry Lewis, Taylor Abels (This is her last show before leaving us for New York), and Dominic Grijalva. Terry’s song “Favorite Places” was not only beautiful but nearly had me in tears–ah what romantic wouldn’t melt listening to that song from that strong, wonderful voice. And Ashley’s song, “I’ll Be Here”, I think had most of the audience in tears. Taylor and Dominic at times had us laughing, and other times smiling, with their fun and sometimes sad songs.
Don’t miss Ordinary Days! It’s romantic, sad, fun and beautiful! Let’s sell this show out for its final weekend! Ordinary Days plays at The Voice Shop at 1296 N. Wishon Ave. in the Tower District of Fresno through December 8. Showtimes are: December 6 – ArtHop 5:30-8:30 and show starts at 9 p.m., December 7 at 8 p.m., and December 8 at 2 & 8 p.m.
Tickets are $14.50 online or $17 at the door, $15 student rush. Cash and Check ONLY at the door.
There’s so much great theatre going on this month and KRL will be at most of it, so keep watching for more reviews! And plan on a theatre filled holiday because you’re not going to want to miss any of it. Check out our reviews up already of Beehive and Dad’s Christmas Miracle.
Video Interview with Ordinary Days Cast: