These Streets at ACT Theatre
Also see David's review of Teatro ZinZanni's Dinner at Wotan's
The show, directed spottily by Amy Poisson, feels like a well-produced, overly earnest workshop, in which neither the period tunes nor the dramatic scenario are fully cooked. Many songs are only presented in snippet form, not the best way to introduce us uninitiated types to them. Sometimes the casting of the two versions of the characters is dead-on, as with actors John Q. Smith and Evan Crockett as the elder and younger DJ Bryan who pseudo-narrates, and in other cases, particularly the role of Kyla, one of the most successful singers, the considerable talents of young Hollis Wong-Wear and her more mature counterpart Sarah Rudinoff could not seem more out of sync.
Musical director Harley and a vibrant onstage band are the real deal, and when Rudinoff is belting out a song that actually gets to be heard in its entirety, These Streets takes flight, but these moments are fleeting. The cast gives impassioned performances of thinly conceived characters, stereotypes of the era. Chalk These Street up as an honest effort, only fitfully realized.
These Street runs through March 10 at ACT Theatre, 700 Union St., Seattle; $20-$30. For more information call 206-292-7676 or www.acttheatre.org.