Thanks to Google alerts, I get theatre-related news from throughout the United States that I would never get elsewhere.
Take Alabama's The Huntsville Times review of the current touring production of Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, in which critic Jon Busdaker eviscerates the show:
Beware. The box office is swindling hard-earned dollars from people expecting a Broadway-style show.
Keep your money close so you don't accidentally spend it on a ticket, because someone's playing the ol' "bait and switch."
I thought Busdaker was about to blow the lid off the fact that the Dirty Rotten Scoundrels that's currently masquerading as the tour of the Broadway original is not only not directed by the Rialto production's Jack O'Brien, nor choreographed by Jerry Mitchell, but the tour is strictly non-equity and directed instead by Philip Wm. McKinley and choreographed by Vince Pesce.
The bait is advertising the show as the legit progeny of the Broadway original and switching it with a bastardized version that doesn't even have the guts to admit its use anywhere of a non-equity cast.
While the show leaves Huntsville this afternoon for Fort Lauderdale, I see nothing on any of the sites suggesting that this is anything but the real deal. What's more, at the Broward Arts Center, they are still charging $65 for the show's top ticket. Perhaps not much compared with Broadway, but in line with ticket prices for other legitimate Great White Way tour offerings across the country.
As I've cautioned previously with the touring production of Hairspray, it's strictly caveat emptor. Or, if you regularly check Actors Equity's Web site, you can see that the following tours are but pale imitations of the Broadway originals:
Dirty Rotten Scoundrels
The Wedding Singer
Dirty and rotten? Absolutely, especially when they con unsuspecting audiences in each city by not telling the dirty, rotten truth upfront about these shows.
This is Steve On Broadway (SOB).
Touring Hairspray Caught In Sticky Net (April 26, 2007)