Review: ‘Crazy for You’ surpasses the typical romantic comedy

Liesje Powers | Multimedia Editor

By Cassidy Pate | Reporter

Baylor’s department of theatre arts is now showing “Crazy for You: The New Gershwin Musical” at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday and Oct. 4-7 as well as aT 2 p.m. Sunday and Oct. 8 in Jones Theatre.

From gunfights to upside down tap dancing and quick-witted romance, this musical has it all, so if you want to experience a not-so-typical romantic comedy, you will not want to miss this exceptional performance by talented Baylor students.

The department replicated the subtle yet intricate set designs of the Broadway performance of “Crazy for You” in a practical way. The swift scene transitions, elaborate costumes and powerful vocals give the performance added charm.

Crazy for You was first shown in 1992 and the play is set in New York in the 1930s during the Great Depression. An orchestra transports the audience to this time as the show begins with its signature overture.

The opening scene shows the backstage of “Zangler’s Follies,” a show performed in Zangler Theater, which is run and owned by none other than Bela Zangler, a Hungarian producer, played by .

You first see the dance choreographer, Tess, played by Rachel Cendrick, and Zangler locking eyes and Tess reminding him of his wife back home. The chemistry of these actors is evident, which holds true to the entire cast.

The audience then meets Bobby Child, played by a talented yet clumsy behind-the-scenes man who longs to be a part of the main act. In his attempt to impress Zangler with his rendition of “K-ra-zy for You,” Bobby accidentally steps on Zangler’s foot and he is dismissed from the future show.

The actor who plays Bobby is musically sound and dances with ease, qualities that can be found in every actor in the production.

As Bobby makes his way out of the theater, he is met by his banker mother, and Irene, his so-called fiancé of five years. These women have their own ideas for Bobby, most including money, and do not listen to what Bobby has to say for himself.

These actresses portray their characters to an extent that makes the audience gasp and giggle with them.

Bobby’s mother sends him to Deadrock, Nevada where he is to buy the local theater. Once he has arrived, Bobby walks into the scene of an old-western town with cowboys, a post office and entertainment provided by tumbleweeds and fake gunfights.

Weapons aside, the harmonious vocals of these cowboys captivate both the audience and Bobby as they take in the talent of this deserted town.

In comes Polly, an enthusiastic mail carrier, who desires more for her town, yet is willed to stay with her father, the owner of the town’s theater, the one Bobby is to buy. In a love-at-first-sight situation, Bobby is attracted to Polly before learning her name and breaks into a song, “Things Are Looking Up.” She dismisses him, but their shared love for the theater starts to bring them together.

As Polly discovers Bobby’s true intentions of coming to Deadrock, he is left to make a plan to save her theater on his own terms. Knowing the showgirls would not come without Zangler himself and Polly unwilling to work with Bobby, Bobby pretends to be the infamous Zangler to get everybody on board.

Once they have arrived, the showgirls and cowboys work to create a production that will rejuvenate the the town to its glory days.

The plot thickens as Bobby tries to hide his identity and the real Zangler comes to Deadrock to find Tess. Humor strikes the audience as Bobby transitions between Bobby and Zangler while Polly and Tess merge the talents of the small town production crew.

Anticipation builds as the first show date arrives, but a zero percent turnout diminishes their hopes.

With his identity on the line, Bobby works to revitalize the town show as well as gain the affection of Polly and get the real Zangler’s backing to make it great. The next time around, the crew will be unstoppable.

With its frequent plot twists, Crazy for You keeps the audience in their seats while their heads bop to the beat.

Additional actors, such as Lank Hawkins, the greedy owner of the Deadrock hotel who is also trying to buy Polly’s family theater, a pair of British tourists and of course the Zangler Follies and cowboys, create a live adaptation of this award winning musical you will not want to miss.

Be sure to stay for the entire show to learn if Bobby makes it to the big time and if Polly is able to save her beloved theater and revive the town of Deadrock.

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