Thursday, June 10, 2010

Rock of Ages Toronto

So it’s no secret that I’m a junkie when it comes to musicals and live theatre. Being lucky enough to live a short drive from Toronto means I get the opportunity to see a lot of Broadway caliber shows. I’ve seen The Phantom, Beauty and the Beast, We Will Rock You, Jersey Boys, Mama Mia, The Sound of Music, Grease, Dirty Dancing, The Rockettes Christmas… and countless other performances. There’s nothing like a night at the theatre for me.

Friday night, the hubs and I, along w/ SMIL and FIL went to see Rock of Ages at the Royal Alexandra Theatre. OH.MY.GOD it was so flippin’ fun!!!!!! For those who don’t know, it’s similar in premise to We Will Rock You (which is a musical based around the music of Queen) but this one is classical rock from across the board and it’s an absolute blast to watch.

It is side-splittingly funny from the start- and I mean that literally because even the voice over recording before the show starts, warning against flash photography and cell phones, is HILARIOUS- and the talent will knock your socks off.

I was familiar with both leads from other productions and was excited to watch them in these new roles.

Yvan Pedneault who played Drew in ROA, was also Galileo when we saw We Will Rock You. This guys voice... I swear to god.  Even singing classic rock he hits a few notes through the show that give you chills.  He's a vocal powerhouse.  And he's not bad to look at either.

Elicia Mackenzie, who played Sherrie in ROA, was cast through the television special “How Do You Solve a Problem like Maria?” for the lead in The Sound of Music a few years ago. We happened to see her understudy when we went to SOM (who was fantastic by the way), but because of the strange circumstances surrounding her casting I saw her perform countless other times at events around the city. Sherrie was quite the departure from Maria, but Elicia really pulled it off.

The supporting cast is fantastic. So much energy and talent. You couldn’t help but leave with a smile on your face and a bounce in your step. My favorite character by far was Lonny (played by the hilarious Aaron Walpole)… I even bought (and then wore for the rest of the night) his "Hooray for Boobies" tee-shirt. The guy seriously had me in stitches the entire show.

All in all, it’s a kick ass performance and aside from the Phantom (which for me is on a pedastel so high no one will be able to touch it) this was by far the best musical I've seen. Kick-ass talent, hilarious dialogue, great music and awesome energy. Incredible.

If you get the chance to see this musical… do it!

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