Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Bring It On Review by Melissa Borner of Poland

Love the movie Bring It On? Come see it on stage at the Stanley on the 25th and 26th of March. Watch as the character Campbell Davis finds herself in a whirlwind of her Senior year, switching schools and discovering who she really is. See her compete her way to the top as she and her teammates preform daring stunts and lifts without any nets! For tickets go to broadwayutica.com or call for more info at 315-724-7196. So take some time to travel back to your high school days at Bring It On the Musical. Thank you Bank of Utica for giving YAP the opportunity to view shows throughout the year! @broadwaytheaterleagueofutica #BTLYAP #BankofUtica

Bring It On Review by Juliana Joyce of Central Valley Academy

Last night I was able to watch Bring It On: The Musical at the Stanley Theatre. Although I am credited with only one year of cheerleading, I was curious and excited to watch how this movie-turned musical was portrayed on stage. The beginning started a bit slow in my opinion, as it started with the ballad 'What I was Born to Do' and dialogue, but as soon as the tempo picked up, the group stunts that shot a flyer up into the air a...t a crazy speed and the triple backhand springs, the show caught my attention. I was surprised by how many cheer moves I recognized that were executed to perfection. With main characters like the determined Campbell, the lovably awkward Bridgette, the fierce Nautica, and the swoon worthy Randall, show steered away from being a super corny film-gone Broadway adaptation. The show was extremely upbeat and the tunes that went with them- especially 'It Ain't No Thing', and 'Killer Instinct', I couldn't get the catchy tracks out of my head! I was a bit disappointed with the dance crew's choreography, as I was expecting the same level of insane stunts as the cheer squad had, but nonetheless, I still thoroughly enjoyed the show. Special thanks to Bank of Utica for sponsoring the Youth Ambassador Program Broadway Theatre League of Utica #‎BTLYAP

Peter and the Starcatcher review by Hannah Wagner of West Canada Valley

A few days ago I had the pleasure of viewing Peter and the Starcatcher at The Stanley Theatre.  This innovative show tapped into the audience's imagination and intellectual side throughout the performance.  It was incredible how the actors portrayed certain aspects without being completely obvious about it.  The sets were so simple yet the show in its entirety was intricate and complex.  The creativity was not the only captivating thing about this show.  The actors themselves were quite entertaining and really portrayed the characters with emotion.  Each character had their own personality and actions.  One downside to this show would be that if you took your focus away for one second, you would be completely lost.  This show was so inventive and creative, I would love to see it multiple times.  It is not a show that everyone enjoys, but my fellow YAPpers and I certainly did.  Thanks to the Broadway Theatre League and the Bank of Utica for allowing us to see the shows that come to town! #YAP #BTL

Peter and the Starcatcher Review by Tayler Kochan of Whitesboro

On March 5th, 2014, I was given the opportunity to see "Peter and the Star catcher" at the Stanley Theater with the Youth ambassador program. This story is mainly based on "Peter Pan". "Peter and the Star Catcher is the adult prequel to "Peter Pan". In the show, there are all male characters in the cast except one female character. The female character is "Molly" who plays the love interest to "Boy" (By the end of the show, he becomes Peter Pan). The story starts off with the whole cast on their boat (the Neverland) where they are trying to bring back Molly's treasure chest so the queen doesn't obtain it ("God save her!"). Molly ends up meeting three lost boys who will help her find the treasure. At the beginning of Act 2, there is a hilarious number where the cast is all dressed like mermaids. It was definitely the best part of the show! The character "Boy" ends up all of a sudden calling himself Peter, he remembered what his name was. The relationship between Molly and Peter grows and they become closer. The cast ends up meeting an evil pirate (black stache) who ends up severing his arm when closing the treasure chest. He proceeds to say "oh my gosh", "oh my god", and "ermagurd" millions of times! This forces to him to install a hook (Captain hook is his resemblance in the show). This show is truly unique in many ways. I would like to thank #BTLYAP @BroadwayTheatreLeagueOfUtica and @BankOfUtica for the opportunity to see this show!

Peter and the Starcatcher Review by Tino Laterza of Frankfort Schuyler

Last Tuesday, through the Youth Ambassador Program at the Stanley, I was able to go see the adult prequel to Peter Pan, "Peter and the Starcatcher". I had heard many great things about this show! I heard that it was a hilarious show based on the very well known tale of Peter Pan. Do to all the talk and publicity of this show I was extremely excited to see it! To be completely honest, I was quite confused through most of the show which was disappointing and much of a downer to my excitement. This may be simply because I hadn't ever heard of this prequel. Which I guess could have been the reason I was lost through most of the show. But aside from that, there was some very good things about the show that did make the performance a great one. First I thought that the staging of the whole show was phenomenal! The way that they uses the rope as doorways and prison ceils and using people as doorways and walls. The way the cast on stage transitioned for standing still as a rock and jumping into an action and interacting with one another was mind blowing. The character that I think stood out the most and did the best job must have been the man who played supposedly the character of "Captain Hook". My favorite scene in the show was the scene where Captain Hook slams his hand in the treasure chest. The way he delivered his lines were perfect. Overall I think that the show was decent. I have seen better but then again it could have just been me! I'd like to thank the Broadway Theatre League and the Youth Ambassador Program and Utica Bank for this experience at the Stanley last Tuesday!! @broadwaytheatreleagueofutica #BTLYAP

Peter and the Starcatcher Review by Nathan Edwards of New York Mills

Have you ever wondered how Peter Pan got his powers or how he got his name? Well in the smash hit play Peter and the Star Catcher the tale of how Peter Pan came to be is displayed through witty humor and a couple of added songs.  Peter originally was an orphan with no name who met the love of his life, Molly while they were on a journey to deliver a mysterious star dust that made you whatever you wanted.  Peter and Molly face tough challenges as they realize their true identities.  However, the biggest challenge was Black Stache, the evil and ruthless pirate captain who took Molly’s father hostage in an attempt to get the star dust.  However, as everyone knows Peter and Black Stache or Captain Hook become rivals in what is known as Peter Pan today… However you may not know that Molly is actually Wendy’s mother!  Through the comedic timing and amazing talent, Peter and the Star Catcher provided all the hilarity I thought that was going to ensue, however, it was a little longer than I wanted but the comedy and the few musical numbers most definitely made up for the length.  Thank you so much to the Bank of Utica for sponsoring this opportunity and thanks to the Youth Ambassadors Program for providing the opportunity and also the Broadway Theatre League of Utica for everything they have done.

Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat Review by Corrigan Jones of Mt.Markham

“Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat” opened on February 26, 2014. This spectacular array of lights and technical features, combined with the American Idol talents of Diana Degarmo and her husband Ace Young, resulted in a show that was nothing short of stupendous. Many technical aspects, including the intriguing light show and the work with projectors, were utilized in such a way that I had never seen before. Seen changes took place upon not only set pieces, but also upon a large canvas on the stage that reflected intricate images that were both effective and beautiful.

The story is based on the “Coat of Many Colors” story of Joseph from the Bible’s Book of Genesis. Each character was effectively depicted and played with joy and enthusiasm. The dance numbers certainly kept the cast in shape and on their toes as the fast pace choreography was executed without a single flaw and dazzled the audience. Our experience was enhanced due to the change of seats for the members of YAP, as we were able to sit just three rows from the stage. This, along with the talent of the cast and crew of the show, made for an effective, fun-filled evening.

A special thanks to Bank of Utica, as well as the Stanley and other sponsors of YAP, that help to make our experience worth while and allowing the opportunity to view such remarkable performances. 

Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat Review by Renee Henck of Sauquoit

Last week I got the chance to see "Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat" thanks to the Broadway Theatre League Youth Ambassador Program and the Bank of Utica. I've seen several impressive musicals recently, but this one stood out for a different reason than most: the ensemble. I was stunned by the talent the ensemble contained. I found my eyes constantly drawn to them because of their hilarious facial expressions, amazing singing, and intricate choreography. My favorite songs were those led by Joseph's brothers, "Those Canaan Days" and "Grovel, Grovel." These show stealing numbers combined with fun, bright costumes and sets made a fantastic show. #BTLYAP at Broadway Theatre League of Utica.

Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat Review by Ashley Parent of Holland Patent

A modernistic take on an Old Testament tale overtook the Stanley Theatre on February 27th, 2014 as the revival of the Tim Rice and Andrew Lloyd Webber show Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat embarked on the first night of its nationwide tour. The musical brought two well-known faces from the hit reality TV show American Idol to Utica as well as a Tony Award-winning costume designer and director/choreographer. Diana DeGarmo and Ace Young, not only former Idol contestants but also newlyweds, took the stage by storm-or, rather, by rainbow. DeGarmo as the narrator moved the story along and kept it interesting through her interactions with the other characters-especially Joseph (Young), an ambitious dream interpreter. The vocal talent of each was matched by the dancing abilities of other cast members-from Joseph's 11 brothers and their wives to Pharaoh, an Elvis impersonator. Even Jacob, the old father of the 12 could tap up some ancient dust! The combination of references to the modern world through the use of music and the tradition of the culture in Canaan and Egypt were done tastefully through different elements of production. The set design, primarily created by the projection of light, images, and video onto a white or plain medium aided in an accurate depiction of the past world that appeals to today's eyes. The revival successfully brought the elements of set and costuming together by making the backdrop combine with Joseph's Dreamcoat to make it look larger than before it was destroyed in the story. The use of a pit orchestra also met the demands of abiding by tradition while appealing to the modern ear, as the music style ranged from jazz to country to reggae. The diversity of the cast (all the brothers did not look the same) added to an underlying theme that we are all brothers and sisters on this earth-we are one in the same, no person being better or worse than others. Joseph is a show that appeals to the young and the old that can inspire anyone to believe in themselves and shoot for the stars-anything is possible if you work hard for it, as Joseph did both in the musical and the tale from the Bible. Thanks to Bank of Utica I was able to see Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat as a Youth Ambassador for the @broadwaytheatreleagueofutica. There's still time to see Joseph tonight at the Stanley at 7:30 or on tour across America. #BTLYAP

Memphis Review by AnnaRae Martin of Waterville

I had the privilege last night to see the musical Memphis, Memphis is a show that will blow you away with its energetic music and powerful ballads. The national tour knocks it out of the ballpark, with vocals that floored me with their power. Any fan of rock and roll music will be in love with songs like Scratch My Itch and Big Love, I nearly fell out of my seat with laughter during portions of Big Love (The Elvis Impersonation part). However fair warning families with young children, this show has some language not suitable  for young kids and a harsh violence. That being said, I love that fact that Memphis doesn’t shy away from the treatment of African Americans in the 1950’s. The ending will want you get up and dance. In quoting Huey : Hockadoo! #BTLYAP

Memphis Review by Margarita Molina of Proctor

If you’re looking for a toe tapping good time, Memphis might just be the show for you.  As a youth ambassador of the Broadway Theater League, a program that is sponsored by Bank of Utica, I had the pleasure of seeing Memphis when it came to the Stanley.  The show was a treat, an all around pleasing spectacle.  The dance moves specifically were incredible to watch, the moves were lively, intricate and at times intense. The plot was surprisingly moving too, even if it felt like it lost steam in the second act. The themes of race, love and music all intersected powerfully.  The ending may leave more to be desired from some audience members, while I found it to be a little unsatisfying in one respect, in another it felt very fresh and different. The whole show feels fresh compared to other musicals, Memphis is a different, but it is a very good different. It is surely worth the watch.