Saturday, June 14, 2008

Girls Night Out

‘GIRLS NIGHT OUT’—a lot of hype and not much fun!

Before the opening night performance of ‘GIRLS NIGHT OUT, THE MUSICAL,’ at the Cleveland Play House, the ladies were stoked. Many had already had their fill of Cosmos (the favored drink of the ‘SEX AND THE CITY’ crowd) and were ready to let loose. Some made it perfectly clear that they were not thrilled with the four males who had braved the hordes of women to attend. (The males consisted of a couple of reviewers who had to be there, a male usher and a man who appeared to have been dragged in by his wife/girl friend.)

Unfortunately, all the ‘gals” enthusiasm was for naught. ‘GIRLS NIGHT: THE MUSICAL,’ is just another retread of that same old stuff that’s been seen before. It’s so poorly constructed that, in spite of a before curtain announcement that the ladies were going to be dancing in the aisles, the first opportunity to do so didn’t take place until a few minutes before intermission.

Take a trite plot, throw in some “women’s power” songs, add a bunch of off-color innuendoes, and a well-endowed male blow-up doll, add a few good singers, and hope that the audience’s enthusiasm carries the day. It didn’t. After a while even those who had an edge on, lost it as the dullness and the alcohol settled in, and the stories about bras, the pain of giving birth, stupid boy friends, dumb husbands and pregnancy, lost their edge.

The cast is talented. Some of the songs like “Don’t Cry Out Loud,” “The Love of My Man,” and “I Am What I Am,” were well done. Some of the shticks worked, most fell flat.

CAPSULE JUDGMENT: In spite of good intentions, ‘GIRLS NIGHT OUT’ is basically an uninspired, uncreative, unappealing production. The question is, why did the prestigious Cleveland Play House invite this touring company into its venue?