Thursday, September 18, 2014

Follow us:
Follow @NY1 on Twitter Follow NY1 News on Facebook Follow NY1 News on Google+ Subscribe to this news feed 

News

NY1 Theater Review: "Kinky Boots"

  • Text size: + -
TWC News: NY1 Theater Review: "Kinky Boots"
Play now

Time Warner Cable video customers:
Sign in with your TWC ID to access our video clips.

  To view our videos, you need to
enable JavaScript. Learn how.
install Adobe Flash 9 or above. Install now.

Then come back here and refresh the page.

"Kinky Boots" is a new musical which features a score by pop star Cyndi Lauper and a book by Tony-winning Broadway veteran Harvey Fierstein. NY1's Roma Torre filed the following review.

If you're a fan of "La Cage Aux Folles", "Hairspray" or "Billy Elliot", chances are you're going to get quite a kick out of "Kinky Boots". And while creative connections between these shows span decades, I can happily report "Kinky Boots" stands on its own.

Based on the 2005 British film, it's getting the musical theatre treatment with book by Harvey Fierstein and direction and choreography by Jerry Mitchell. Both men, veterans of "La Cage" and "Hairspray", won Tonys in the process. The score is by pop star Cyndi Lauper.

It's the story of a young man who reluctantly inherits his father's struggling shoe business and ends up staving off liquidation by producing kinky boots for drag queens. Lola, the lead drag queen's back-story, involves a homophobic father who trains his son to box. The show's message is all about acceptance and being comfortable in one's skin.

Sound familiar? Of course it does. But the secret to "Kinky Boots" is a fine set of talents that fit together like well-worn shoes. Fierstein's expert book steps lively through a thicket of fairly predictable turns.

The big surprise is Lauper's score, a wonderfully eclectic blend of tuneful ballads and rousing showstoppers. And speaking of showstoppers, Jerry Mitchell's dazzling staging on a conveyor belt sets a new high for concept choreography.

Stark Sands, in the straight man role, displays a nice range of emotion to go with his fine set of pipes. Annaleigh Ashford commands the spotlight with great comic timing and loads of spunk. And Billy Porter in the showiest role is fabulous. If drag queens have become stereotypes on Broadway, he's one of a kind.

I can't say "Kinky Boots" is quite up to par with the earlier shows I mentioned, but its irrepressible spirit, not to mention lots of heart and extra large "sole", make it blissfully entertaining.

10.11.12.248 ClientIP: 54.197.130.16, 23.62.6.93 UserAgent: CCBot/2.0 (http://commoncrawl.org/faq/) Profile: TWCSAMLSP