Saturday, December 20, 2014

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NY1 Theater Review: 'Forbidden Broadway'

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Forbidden Broadway skewers the latest crop of Broadway shows and their stars with imitations that are as good, if not better, than the performances they are sending up. NY1's Roma Torre filed the following report.

There's nothing quite like the tonic of Forbidden Broadway to settle the stomach after binging on late season Broadway openings. And once again the ingenious Gerard Alessandrini is at the top of his game matching the best of Broadway with his own inimitable skewered takes.

The latest crop of shows offers much grist for Alessandrini’s spiked mill. From Hedwig to Cabaret to Aladdin, everything is sliced and diced to the core.

And as in past installments, the company of four gifted performers and a sole accompanist are up for the challenge, changing character and costume at lightning speed with virtuosic versatility.

Scott Richard Foster and Marcus Stevens knock us dead with their impressions of Sylvester Stallone and Andy Karl in Rocky, and Carter Calvert channels Carrie Underwood’s Okie twang as Maria in the televised Sound Of Music.

As much as individual performers and shows are targeted, Forbidden Broadway pokes fun at trends—jukebox musicals along with child actors in lead roles: Matilda, Annie and Billy Elliot. If, as they say, imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, it's quite clear Alessandrini and his sublime company are true fans of the theater. But in this case the imitations are as good, if not better, than the performances they're sending up.

After 32 years, Forbidden Broadway has settled comfortably into a formula, but it’s a winning one that, magically, never seems to grow old. ClientIP:, UserAgent: CCBot/2.0 ( Profile: TWCSAMLSP