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Tuesday, October 9, 2012

'Cole Porter' is a hit in Falls Church



Cole Porter fans will not want to miss the story of his life and loves told in songs and narrative in Cole Porter: You're the Top! now on stage at Creative Cauldron in Falls Church.

The passion between Porter (Sean Thompson) and his wife, Linda Lee Thomas (Carolyn Cole) glows throughout the non-stop original musical as their eyes lock, and they sing and dance to 26 of Porter's compositions, magnificently assembled by co-directors Laura Connors Huff and Stephen Gregory Smith from Porter's repertoire of more than 800 creations.

Of course, the crowd's favorites are the expected:"Let's Misbehave," "Let's Do It, Let's Fall in Love," and "From This Moment On," to name a few. 

Did you know Porter wrote a song about a gigolo?  The directors include some lesser-knowns, too.

Carolyn Cole and Sean Thompson star in Creative Cauldron's Cole Porter:  You're the Top!/Photos by Gary Mester, Written in Light Photography 

With the audience right there on three sides, "It Ain't Etiquette" to get up on the stage and dance with the stars although it was mighty tempting to join them "Ridin' High," singing and whirling around the fabulous black and white set (Margie Jervis) from table to piano to chaise lounge and back again, telling Porter's and Thomas's stories about "I Love Paris," "I Happen to Like New York," and Porter's break-through.  That he was attracted to men and she was eight years older did not diminish (much) their immense yearning for one another since Linda gets a kick out of Porter who has her under his skin.

If you thought it might be tough to sing and dance at the same time, never fear!  Thompson and Cole make it look, oh, so easy. "In the Still of the Night" it was "Alright with Me" to "Experiment" and take "All of You" "Night and Day." (Fortunately, there is no sing-a-long.)

Adding oh-la-la to the evening's enjoyment are the sounds produced by Alvin Smithson, musical director and pianist, Kim Martin, drums, and Vince Calcaterra, bass and violin, accompanied by excellent lighting design (Paul Spiegelblatt) and choreography (Kara-Tameika Watkins).

(Edgar Allan Poe fans will remember Thompson from Creative Cauldron's production last year of Nevermore, and Cole who starred in Women of the Blues.)

What: Cole Porter: You're the Top! 

When: Fridays and Saturdays at 8 p.m., Sundays at 2 p.m. and 6 p.m., through October 28, 2012

Where: Creative Cauldron "where imagination bubbles over" at Artspace, 410 South Maple Avenue, Falls Church, Virginia 22046

How much:  Prices start at $20

For more information:  571-239-5288

 

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