Naked Boys Singing!
A review by Patrick Shannon, III
Most of us know that song from the musical Gypsy sung by one of
the three strippers that begins, “You gotta have a gimmick, If
you ain’t got a gimmick....” well, the musical revue currently on
stage at the Marigny Theatre has not one, but six gimmicks, all
of which are visible throughout the song and dance numbers
performed by a cast of talented men who have the balls to let
their gimmicks dangle and bounce around for all to see. And why
not, I guess. Of course when one has seen as many as this
reviewer (yeah I was a short arm inspector for the U.S. Coast
Guard) it becomes not that exciting, but to dangle ones dingle
under spotlights for about an hour and a half is quite a gimmick
and a little unnerving to say the least. Nervous giggles from
much of the audience, especially the ladies. And a few lesbians
who may be seeing such gimmicks under spotlights for the first
So, Marigny Theatre and To Do Productions has another hit on its
stage and this time with gimmicks. The review is directed with
the touch of a master under the hand of one of our town’s most
talented and professional of Musical Directors/Director Jonne
Dendinger, who also designed the sparkly and witty set. There is
clever lighting by Timm Holt and just a yard of so of costumes by
our marvelous Mistress of All Stage Works, Donnie Jay. With this
line up of front line techs one quite naturally assumes a good
show will be performed.
And one is not wrong to assume such. The first act gives us
several song/skits such as the opening number, Gratuitous Nudity
of which the lyrics declaim, “Which you have all come to see....”
and you get your first full frontal shot of extended male nudity
in all its varied wobbling, trembling, wrinkled and ironed,
thick, thin, long, short, fat, well nestled or not, hanging from
the mid section of 6 healthy virile looking male specimens. At
first it brought to mind those sex ed films shown in Coast Guard
boot camp....” and now we have the male penis which as you can see
hangs above the testicles...these have not been injured by any
venereal disease such as the ones you are about to see in the
next view...etc. etc. But in the case of this live and on stage
showing the message is one of light hearted satire and parody all
about the subject at issue, the penis.
Jason George does a fine job dancing with broom and bucket, dust
cloth and maids hat to the song The Naked Maid. It’s always a
pleasure to see this young talented actor in the nude. He has a
beautiful dancer’s body and other noticeable assets.
My favorite in this first act is the song parody Bliss of the
Bris, with very funny lyrics about the Jewish ritual
circumcision. The song is done with a droll sense of perfect
comedic timing by Philip Gordon in a baby diaper and the cast all
dressed up to resemble various stereotypical Jewish family
members including a Rabbi holding a large scissors.
There is a touching song Window To Window that deals with love
and yearning sung with a sensitive touch by Bryan Wagar to
someone he sees and loves beyond his window. The love object is
posed by Jason George.
This act ends with three other songs which are about other
aspects of male to male adoration.
The second act presents us with some of the best numbers in the
show, especially my favorite Perky Porn Star performed with
bounce, bravura and charm by the well endowed in every aspect
Philip Gordon. This is a delightful song and dance routine you
won’t easily forget.
The other seven songs are all well done by these brave let it all
hang out cast members which included Julius Dietze (who sings a
very touching love song solo beautifully) and Jason George,
Philip Gordon, Marshall Harris, Travis Resor, and Bryan Wagar.
Each of these star performers has his own solo and each does it
with praise worthy ability and fine singing voices. Each guy was
able to do the excellent choreography very well all created by
handsome Kevin Champagne. You might say they each have a moment
to become cock of the walk on stage.
If you missed Naked Boys Singing! during its long run in New York
(it’s still running) now you get to see a fine version here in
our town. Don’t miss this show. You can brush up on your
anatomical knowledge rather than your Shakespeare and enjoy some
very clever songs in a professional display of naked boys
singing. It’s theatre in the raw and good for you, like veggies
and whole grains. It’s a fun filled frolic of bare flesh served
under a cover of spicy song and dance.
--- Patrick Shannon, III