Certainly, everyone remembers the cult-classic film Flashdance, which inspired audiences to belt out Irene Cara’s “What a Feeling,” or to get crazy on the dance floor like a “Maniac.” Jennifer Beals, who was the star of the movie, played a girl who worked as a welder with macho men during the day before plying her real passion as a dancer after sundown.
The wonderfully motivational tale has not faded; in fact, it has gotten stronger over the years. The multi-decade-long popularity of Flashdance is fresh at everyone’s fingertips, again, this time as a musical. The book (by Tom Hedley and Robert Cary), music (by Robbie Roth), and lyrics (by Robert Cary and Robbie Roth) came together as a fully realized musical in 2008, which just finished its most recent run at the Fred Kavli Theatre in Thousand Oaks, CA, on January 17th.
The cast of the production, led by Julia Macchio as the main protagonist Alex Owens, Ryan Neal Green as Nick Hurley, David T. Zimmerman as Harry, Dana Hunter as Tess, Tanisha Moore as Kiki, Nic Casaula as Jimmy, and Hannah K. MacDonald as Gloria, are all spectacular in their own way. Truly, to say that the casting is spot-on would actually be an understatement; the individual performers not only resuscitate the spirit of the 1980s, but add a layer of contemporaneity to the show.
Every performer proves to have triple-threat skills of acting, singing, and dancing in this extravaganza. Of course, much credit also goes to musical director Brent McGee, music supervisor Keith Levenson, production managers Kirsten Upchurch and Keith Truax, assistant director Dana Iannuzzi and director/choreographer Paul Stancato for the splendor of the musical from first minute until last.
The Fred Kavli Theatre is also one of the most beautiful auditoriums in Southern California to have seen a show of this caliber or any other. What makes this theatre extraordinarily special is that it is terrifically conducive to the best viewing angles (from nearly anywhere in the auditorium) and resoundingly pleasing acoustics.
For more top-notch shows at the Fred Kavli Theatre at Thousand Oaks’ Civic Arts Plaza, visit http://www.civicartsplaza.com/