June 4, 2011

Jersey Boys Is Awesome in Appleton!

June 4th, 2011

The first review has been posted for the JERSEY BOYS first national tour in Appleton & critic Shane Nyman is raving! Here’s a preview:

The role of Frank Valli was really make or break for “Jersey Boys,” but all worries are brushed aside from the get-go, as Joseph Leo Bwarie and his golden pipes nail it. Bwarie does a wonderful job capturing Valli’s falsetto, which maybe more than anything was the Four Seasons’ moneymaker. Bwarie, alone in the spotlight, had the building in his palm with “Can’t Take My Eyes Off You.”

But as much as Bwarie’s fantastic voice was often the centerpiece, Matt Bailey’s Tommy DeVito is the most magnetic character. Bailey owned his role as the sharp-tongued DeVito, whose outstanding mafia debts in part triggered the beginning of the end for the Four Seasons.

DeVito’s character is like if Vince Vaughn had been cast in “Goodfellas,” a fast-talking man’s man who doesn’t hesitate to get his hands dirty in order to get what he wants. This, of course, doesn’t come without reputation-damaging consequences. If any of the real Four Seasons would feel sheepish about the way they’re portrayed on the stage, it’d definitely be DeVito.

Still, if that were the case, seeing Bailey’s charismatic performance, warts and all, might still set him at ease.

The contrast of Valli and DeVito as characters makes for an interesting dynamic in the first half of the show. Young Valli is nervous, awkward and the confident DeVito takes him under his wing in both good ways and bad. He pushes the young lad to commit a robbery, helps teach him how to talk to women and, in the grand scheme of things, walk like a man.

Both Quinn VanAntwerp and Steve Gouveia are solid in their roles of Bob Gaudio and Nick Massi, with Gouveia spending most of the first half more as a background prop than a member of the group.

He gets his time in the spotlight, though, and makes the best of it. Gouveia’s dry, matter-of-fact delivery makes for some of the show’s best laughs, even handling the time period where the group is crumbling.

And as one bandmate often on the sidelines, Massi often comes off as having the most grounded of the four points of view.

Visit PostCrescent.com to read the full review.

No Comments »

No comments yet.

RSS feed for comments on this post. | TrackBack URI

Please leave a comment