HITS THE MUSICAL! – This is a must see.

HITS THE MUSICAL! – This is a must see.

What do you get when you select from 7,000 kids auditioning in song and dance, and put the top 25 or so that are ultimately selected together with producers dedicated to supporting young people in the arts?  You add a talented and creative team to write the scripts, arrange and write the music.  Then add choreographers and directors that can obviously relate to these age groups, and they all work to create 2 hours of high-powered, musically inspired, fast action entertainment.  One could not be more inspired about the future of song and dance after watching this troupe perform.

Anybody in the dance and entertainment industry might fully expect that young kids can sing all the contemporary tunes and dance contemporary, break and hip-hop.  Most would still be amazed to see the youngest kids from age 10, still of elementary school age, performing at such levels.  It is not their contemporary moves and songs that most inspired me.  It is the broad reach of musical genres that the writers and choreographers chose to include.  These selections included music from stage and screen including music from All that Jazz, Moon River, and Singing in the Rain to name just a few.  Three things stand out.  First is the selections and arrangements that were sure to include music that would reach every generation watching the show.  It might be kids performing, but the producers are smart enough to know who is buying the tickets.  No matter what your age, you would hear and like the music selected, and seeing young people perform your favorite film and stage genre so proficiently was heartening.  Second was the obvious care and direction to make sure that each performance was not a modernized version of your old song, but one done with the character, attitude and even ambiance of the original.  These did not appear to be choices made for appearance or even sex appeal.  These choices were made to offer a corresponding, if not complimentary, voice to the original you would remember.  Third, the arrangements used and developed were all short enough to keep the show fast paced, while fulfilling the image you have of those old songs.  This also allows for a big part of the cast to be featured and shown in a number and variety of pieces to the point that the cast’s versatility and strengths are well displayed.

Ballroom dancers might come away somewhat disappointed that the stage and film portion of the program did not include more partnership dancing as was often displayed by Fred and Ginger, who received a mention in song, but no displays of their style and panache.  One can only hope for the future.  That said the quality of stage, modern and ballet dance sections, and then later Hustle and contemporary was stylish, performed in character, and greatly enhanced the entire performance.

Act 2 was again jam packed with even more recognizable music.  Now from the Pop Charts and albums of the ages.  At least from Age of Aquarius forward.  Each decade from the 1960’s on was included up through the 2000’s.  They included some of the greatest music of those days, along with costuming, hairstyles and dance moves we all will recognize.  From a delightful performance of Grease, to I Love Rock and Roll, to I will survive, Livin’ La Vida Loca, and even James Brown, every song has the energy and character of the original performed with the exuberance of youth.  Again, an old historian like me might wonder why they started with the 60’s when the beginning of rock and roll was only one decade back.  Again, I suspect the producers and team know that those that might remember the 50’s or even the 40’s are not in abundance nor the ones bringing their kids and even grandchildren to the show.  And after all, they can only keep the audience so long.  This is a fabulous original production worthy of support.

Let’s hope it makes it to BROADWAY!  The crowd would love it and so will you.

Check out: www.thehitstour.com .

Tell your friends and make plans to see it, support it and bring the kids.  This is family friendly entertainment at its finest.

Michael Reichenbach


Dance Week

Vol. XXXXVI, No 16

April 21, 2023

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