Every year Theatre Under the Stars (TUTS) puts on two musicals at the Malkin Bowl – an amazing outdoor theatre in Stanley Park. We’re regulars, having seen every show for the past 5 years. Last night we got to watch the opening night performance of Legally Blonde – the Musical.
I’ve never seen the movie, but I wasn’t expecting much from the musical. Well, I was blown away. It was funny, sexy, and clever. Easily the best TUTS musical I’ve seen in the past 3 years (probably since Joseph in 2010) and by far the sexiest. The “Gay or European” song was hilarious and “Whipped Into Shape” showed off some impressive jumping rope choreography while singing.
It is well worth checking out. There’s no better place to be on a warm summer evening. And it’s some of the most affordable entertainment in Vancouver – tickets are between $29 and $44. We’ll be back to see TUTS other show, “How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying” in a few weeks.
Continuing my exploration Vancouver’s summer theatre scene, last week I watched Cirque du Soleil’s Kooza and TUTS’ Singin’ in the Rain.
Kooza is the 2nd Cirque show I’ve seen, and like Corteo 2 years ago I was very impressed. Kooza is a return to the basics for Cirque, featuring traditional acts like trapeze, contortionists, and tumblers, but with the cirque’s flair for the dramatic. The acts that really stood out for me were the unicyclist, the Wheel of Death, and the clowns. It is amazing what the Cirque performers can do with their bodies, it almost doesn’t seem real. There were several times during the show that I thought the performers were screwing up on purpose to bring back some realism.
It’s been a great summer for Theatre Under the Stars outdoor stage at Malkin Bowl. The weather has been consistently sunny. I think it only rained one night in the past month, and that was Saturday night when we found ourselves watching Singin’ In the Rain (how fitting). I enjoyed Singin’ in the Rain, but it wasn’t nearly as good as Joseph. The songs were memorable and catchy (more so then Joseph) and the dancing was good, but it didn’t draw me in. The humour wasn’t there and there were several slow acting bits that really didn’t translate well from the film to the stage. That said, when we left we were singing several of the tunes as we biked off in the rain.
I had the pleasure of seeing two excellent theatre productions this week – Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat and Lion King. It is almost a shame to be watching theatre when the weather is so nice, but at least one of the shows we saw was outdoors.
Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat is being performed by Theatre Under the Stars at the Malkin Bowl in Stanley Park – a great venue on a sunny evening. For such a young and local cast of actors, I was really impressed with the talent – the singing, dancing, and acting were top-notch. It was my first time seeing Joseph and I really enjoyed it. I think I had a smile on my face the whole show. It was funny, the songs were varied and catchy (especially the calypso number), and there was an impressive strong-man/circus routine. One cute touch in this performance was they chose a young audience member (a 6-year old boy) to play the 12th brother – he didn’t have any speaking lines, but was on stage for the entire show and was involved in several important scenes. This was my 5th TUTS performance, and I think it was the best one I’ve seen (or at least as good as Annie Get Your Gun two years ago).
Lion King was a visual and musical treat. The costumes and sets were simply stunning. It has been a long time since I’ve seen the movie, so some of the plot I had forgotten. But I still remembered all the songs, and sang along with the little kids in the row in front of us. It is amazing how popular Lion King continues to be with children, considering the movie came out when I was a kid, 16 years ago.
Next week, I’m looking forward to watching Singing in the Rain and Cirque du Soleil’s Kooza.