Orange County Theatre Reviews

(PHOTO CREDIT:  Ed Krieger)

Written by Alina Mae Wilson 

Make of this what you will, but to me, the “blues” was only something that plays in the background while at restaurants (quietly of course so as not to distract from the table chatter).  I couldn’t help but feel underwhelmed at the prospect of spending an evening attending a show called Blues In The Night.  Yet once the show began, my biases were proven completely unfounded. Almost against my will, I was lured into the music and into the lives of the characters onstage.  Though I wouldn’t necessarily describe it as ‘riveting’ all the way through, Blues In The Night varies in range, tempo, and soul.  It is one of the most pleasant surprises I have had in a while.

Chester Gregory stars in “BLUES IN THE NIGHT,” at the Laguna Playhouse, conceived and directed by Sheldon Epps and now playing at the Laguna Playhouse in Laguna Beach.

A dingy little hotel is home to four people: a lady, a woman, a girl, and a man.  All four people have been burdened with circumstance and blessed with heavenly voices.  Throughout the night they sing about their challenges, their perspectives, and their moments of humor.  While it is rare to see them interact with one another directly, all four people’s lives run parallel enough to each other that we can feel a strong kinship among their spirits.  Whenever they do have cause to directly interact with each other, it is always memorable.

I have always prioritized good stories above all else, and I would consider Blues In The Night to be more of a concert with a great theme than a musical.  Instead of watching the plot unfold and build upon itself, we get to hear each song open up and grant us a view into each singer’s life.  To say it’s beautiful almost cheapens the experience.  It’s haunting.  It’s expansive.  And it’s eventually emboldening.

Actors: 

The music ranges from good to great.  Everyone featured is a talented vocalist. Yvette Cason sings well and also provides some much-needed levity in the role of The Lady From the Road.  The score is so emotionally moving that some times you just want to take a break from praying for these souls and just have a laugh and Cason, provides those lighthearted moments.

Overall this is a very good show.  If you want a night to just feel the heart and soul of a variety of people who are looking for that second chance to get on the up and up, you should see Blues In the Night.

February 24 – Sunday, March 10, 2019

 

 

 

Very Good Show!

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