Friday, March 19, 2010

All About Me (The SOB Review)

All About Me (The SOB Review) - Henry Miller's Theatre, New York City, New York

** (out of ****)

In the annals of Broadway history, there have been many truly unforgettable and dynamic duos.

Alfred Lunt and Lynn Fontanne.

Hume Cronyn and Jessica Tandy.

Liam Neesan and Natasha Richardson.

Nathan Lane and Matthew Broderick.

But Michael Feinstein and Dame Edna (Barry Humphries)?

Alas, in All About Me, they don't even come close.

Instead of like pleasurably putting your peanut butter in my chocolate, they're like throwing water on boiling oil to watch it combust. The two redoubtable entertainers are a thrill to watch individually, but this mash-up is too clever and funny by half.

Particularly annoying is that just as you start getting into the groove of one of them, they're interrupted by the other. The show is a massive collision of talent with seemingly spare direction from Casey Nicholaw.

There are enjoyable moments to be sure. I've always enjoyed Dame Edna's purposeful banter with the audience. Her rendition of "All The Single Ladies" with Gregory Butler and Jon-Paul Mateo is the funniest number in the entire show. Feinstein's tinkling of the ivories in the Great American Songbook fares well, as does the humorous vamp that opens the show.

But if you're anything like me, you'll rather see these two exceptional entertainers perform the way they should be: by themselves.

This is Steve On Broadway (SOB).

In keeping with the new Federal Trade Commission (FTC) regulations that unfairly discriminate against bloggers, who are now required by law to disclose when they have received anything of value they might write about, please note that I have received nothing of value in exchange for this post.

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