Windy City Media Group Frontpage News
Celebrating 30 Years of Gay Lesbian Bisexual and Trans News
home search facebook twitter join
Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2018-11-14
DOWNLOAD ISSUE
About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage

Sponsor
Sponsor

  WINDY CITY TIMES

WaistWatchers The Musical
by Karen Topham
2018-10-17

facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email


Playwright: Alan Jacobsen and Vince Dimura

At: Royal George Theatre, 1641 N. Halsted St. Tickets: 312-988-9000 or TheRoyalGeorgeTheatre.com; $45-65. Runs through: Dec. 30

From the Atkins and South Beach diets to WeightWatchers and NutriSystem, tens of millions of people follow diet and exercise plans each year in the hope of losing those excess pounds that make them feel less than beautiful.

Matt Silva's touring production of WaistWatchers the Musical, now at the Royal George Theatre, is 90 minutes of parody songs, personal dramas and hilarious visuals that might not exactly be Shakespeare but certainly is thoroughly entertaining, especially for the women in the audience.

Each character is carefully defined to represent a type. Kiley L. McDonald sparkles as instructor Carla, a woman with a deep love of chocolate who works out to keep in shape for various sexual encounters. Sarah Godwin is Cindy, a recently divorced woman trying to get back into the dating world. Krissy Johnson is Cheryl, a 40-ish woman undergoing a critical midlife crisis. She's been married long enough that her husband's suddenly-renewed sex drive is driving her crazy. And the brilliant Martha Wash ( in town until Oct. 28 ) is Connie, a first-timer at the gym who just wants to get her husband to pay more attention to her. There is also an emcee ( the effervescent Katherine S. Barnes ) who plays multiple characters, such as a chef pushing a giant buffet and a Viagra pill. ( You read that right: Costume designer Jill Rose Keys has a great time with this show. )

These actresses—especially Wash, whose triumphant "Fat & Okay" is the play's most powerful moment—possess wonderful voices and have a delightful time with all of the subtle ( and overt ) sexual innuendo in the lyrics. ( What they do with four giant exercise balls is one of Silva's more fun inventions. ) Johnson, with her wonderful facial expressions and comically exaggerated anguish in songs like "Getting Older," is a joy to watch. And don't let yourself focus solely on whoever is singing: The others in the background are often the greatest humor of the songs. Choreographer Dani Tucci-Juraga ( a fitness trainer in her free time ) puts them through the paces: It's easy to suspect that some of their reactions are completely real.

Silva's production is tight and simple, playing out in a small women's workout gym ( designed by Joe Schermoly ) that bleeds right into audience. Alan Jacobsen's fun script features song parodies with such names as "Botox Queen," "Eat It," "Sounds of Snoring" and "Oops" that composer Vince Dimura has rewritten to obscure the original music. ( This reviewer found that technique, albeit clever, a bit distracting. Spending too much time trying to figure out what song, from Supercalifragilisticexpialadocious" to "Don't Rain on My Parade," was being parodied can pull one out of the moment. )

Diets and fitness are big business in this country right now, and they are indeed rife with parody possibilities. WaistWatchers the Musical ( named perhaps so that no one would confuse it with a real diet movement? ) is a fun, frothy look at an industry that has grown to mega-dimensions ( more than a trillion dollars in 2017 ). It's not anti-fitness; though one song extols the virtue of the "Just eat what you want because it doesn't matter diet," the fun it pokes is gentle and not polemic. However, wIth its final number, "Hot Mamas," the musical makes the point that bodies come in all shapes and sizes.

Audience members who have been drinking and having fun will appreciate that. There's enough in this play for those who go to gyms and those who don't. Just don't expect miracles and deep insights: like diets themselves, this show isn't likely to stay with you for a long time.

Related: www.windycitymediagroup.com/lgbt/Martha-Wash-in-WaistWatchers-in-Sept-Oct/63955.html .


facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email





Windy City Media Group does not approve or necessarily agree with the views posted below.
Please do not post letters to the editor here. Please also be civil in your dialogue.
If you need to be mean, just know that the longer you stay on this page, the more you help us.


  ARTICLES YOU MIGHT LIKE

Gay News

Christmas Bingo, It's a Ho-Ho-Holy Night 2018-11-16 - Christmas Bingo: It's a Ho-Ho-Holy Night returns to the Royal George Theatre for 2018 for the holiday season. Did Santa babysit ...


Gay News

Victory Gardens, Actors Theatre of Louisville present How to Defend Yourself 2018-11-16 - Chicago, IL— Victory Gardens Theater, with Actors Theatre of Louisville, to present the Co-World Premiere of How to Defend Yourself, written by Lily ...


Gay News

Chicago Dramatists has leadership changes 2018-11-14 - Chicago Dramatists announced it has accepted the resignation of Executive Director Vanessa Bamber. Bamber will continue in her position until Dec. 31, according ...


Gay News

Sophia Petrillo Italian Dinner and Talent Show to benefit Hell in a Handbag 2018-11-14 - CHICAGO ( November 13, 2018 ) — Join Dorothy, Rose, Blanche and Sophia for Hell in a Handbag Productions' annual benefit, The Sophia ...


Gay News

GUEST COLUMN Battling Trump via art, an actor's superpower 2018-11-14 - Let's acknowledge one thing, after two years of misery: Our president is not stupid. He is not an idiot or moron. In ...


Gay News

YEPP's 'Rise Up' taking place Nov. 14 2018-11-14 - In recognition of the Transgender Day of Remembrance/Resilience and Youth Homelessness Awareness Month, Youth Empowerment Performance Project ( YEPP ) will host "Rise ...


Gay News

Ike Holter: The 'Right(lynd)' stuff 2018-11-14 - Last week's midterm elections taught us that political engagement is more crucial than ever. This makes Ike Holter's Rightlynd—opening this week at ...


Gay News

'Santuario' readings Nov. 16-18 at Piven 2018-11-13 - Evanston's Piven Theatre Workshop, 927 Noyes St., will present a staged reading of Santuario/Sanctuary on Nov. 16-18. Santuario/Sanctuary is a bilingual documentary theater ...


Gay News

Intersectional team creates change in 'The Revolutionists 2018-11-13 - The Revolutionists, opening at Strawdog Theatre in mid-November, may center on the concerns of 18th-century women during the Reign of Terror, but Lauren ...


Gay News

'TransScripts' brings lives of transgender women into the light 2018-11-13 - In the shadow of President Trump's alleged memo that seeks to define them out of existence by declaring that gender is immutable from ...


 



Copyright © 2018 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.

 

 

 

TRENDINGBREAKINGPHOTOS

Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor


 



Sponsor

About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage


About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots      OUT! Guide     
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Subscriptions      Distribution      Windy City Queercast     
Queercast Archives      Advertising  Rates      Deadlines      Advanced Search     
Press  Releases      Event Photos      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Post an Event      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam      Outguide Categories      Outguide Advertisers      Search Outguide      Travel      Dining Out      Blogs      Spotlight  Video     
Classifieds      Real Estate      Place a  Classified     

Windy City Media Group produces Windy City Queercast, & publishes Windy City Times,
The Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community,
Nightspots, Out! Resource Guide, and Identity.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.