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Entertainment, Food & Beverage

A feel-good date musical

Are you running out of activities to do with your significant other? Catch this musical together for a delightful evening date!
The Straits Times - June 13, 2011
By: Corrie Tan
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A feel-good date musical

review musical
I LOVE YOU, YOU'RE PERFECT, NOW CHANGE
MediaCorp VizPro International
Drama Centre, theatre/Last Friday

Couples looking for a feel-good date night musical - this is it.

Peppered with accessible jokes and crowd-pleasing punchlines, it is easy to see why I Love You, You're Perfect, Now Change is one of the longest-running off-Broadway productions.

The musical is presented as a series of vignettes and boasts an ever-changing set of characters.

It plays up the unsurprising but no less rib-tickling conventions of romance and relationships as feisty young infatuation ripens into older love.

Actors Leanne Ansell, Cynthia Lee MacQuarrie, Richard Meek and R.J. Rosales make a capable ensemble. Accompanied by a jaunty live band, their honeyed timbres reach those higher vocal ranges with practised ease. They gamely tackle every single relationship permutation thrown their way - from an awkward first date to getting cold feet at the altar, to children and divorces and funerals.

Racks of costumes on each side of the stage help to shape each new character as the chameleonic actors switch outfits in full view of the audience.

Scenes are rife with gender-specific cliches, for example, men are glued to soccer matches and love their cars, women indulge in chick-flicks and spend way too much time shopping. Thankfully, director Darren Yap keeps the mawkishness to a minimum by making sure that the dialogue is snappy and sharp.

But regardless of how Yap pairs up the actors in each scene, their on-stage chemistry does see-saw from time to time. Whether on stage or in real life, going through the motions does not a happy couple make. When this happens, the sexual tension does not quite fizzle out, but there is not much of a sizzle either.

Most of the risque moments are of the overt 'nudge nudge, wink wink' sort. But as tired as these stereotypes are, they still drew laughs from an appreciative audience on Friday night.

All wobbles aside, the charm of this lovable musical does come through very strongly with its life- and love-affirming message. Cynics beware: This musical has its requisite smattering of heartaches, but it ultimately looks at love through very rose-tinted lenses.

One cannot help but empathise with the familiar ups and downs that love can bring, and, in spite of myself, I had a smile on my face for most of the show's duration.

A nod must be given, in particular, to the magnetic 23-year-old Ansell, a fresh graduate from the Lasalle College of the Arts who more than holds her own amid her more seasoned fellow cast members.

This youngest cast member is, in fact, quite convincing as an elderly widow rediscovering attraction and affection in the golden years of her life.

This gentle and generally genteel musical is not quite perfect, but it does leave a warm and fuzzy glow in its wake, along with a few infectiously catchy ditties.

corriet@sph.com.sg

I LOVE YOU, YOU'RE PERFECT, NOW CHANGE

Where: Drama Centre Theatre

When: Till Sunday. Tuesdays to Saturdays, 8pm, Sundays, 3 and 8pm

Admission: $69 - $89 from Sistic (call 6348-5555 or go to www.sistic.com.sg )

Info: Some sexual references (for 16 years and above)

 

 

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