All tagged Karen Ziemba

Remembering Steel Pier

The composing team of Kander and Ebb were often attracted to properties that allowed them to tell a show-within-a-show story, often using the show or entertainment style within to provide commentary on the show the theatre audience is watching. Cabaret (cabaret), Chicago (vaudeville), Kiss of the Spider Woman (film), Curtains (musical theatre), The Scottsboro Boys (minstrel shows) and, even to a degree the village storytellers in Zorba employ this conceit. It shouldn’t be a surprise, then, that the team found a way to utilize the dance marathons in Atlantic City of the 1930s to similar effect in the short-lived musical Steel Pier

Kid Victory – Cast Album Review

As I sit here listening to the recently produced cast recording of the John Kander and Greg Pierce musical Kid Victory, I am of two minds about how to approach this review. Do I simply look at the technicalities of this album and report back that Broadway Records has dutifully captured this hard-to-digest little musical for posterity with their usual high standards and aplomb for preserving musical theatre with verve and precision? Or do I dig a little deeper and share my reactions to a musical that is both compelling and unsettling, a challenging piece of theatre that ultimately leaves me unsatisfied, if intrigued by the choice to tell this story to begin with?

Nunsense: The TV Series — A Review

If you have ever attended a production of the 1985 Dan Goggin musical Nunsense (or any of its myriad sequels), you are going to approach a TV series based on the property with certain expectations (or lack of expectations, maybe). Nunsense has always been a bit of a one-joke musical, irreverent behavior and tired religious jokes enacted by a posse of fun and feisty nuns who are trying to raise money for one of their causes. The musical trades in B-grade humor, peppy (if forgettable) melodies, and our delight in feeling slightly naughty for laughing at such serious stuff as the holy spirit and communion wine.