Thursday, November 21, 2019

Officially Holiday Season

There are plenty of indications the holiday season is in full force. Whether we like it or not.  Christmas trees at Walmart,  holiday music on loop at Mix 98.1 F.M, peppermint mochas at Starbucks,! ornaments and bells galore - even Santa - in my office.

But it is NOT officially the holiday season until Richmond Triangle Players does their annual show.

This year's selection, Times Square Angels is a hit! With drag queens, lovestruck Romeos, sinister villains and naughty angels giggling and acting up when they think God (voiced by Susan Sanford) isn't paying attention, RTP's production of Charles Busch's renowned play is the perfect way to officially welcome the holiday season.

Irish O'Flanagan (Wette Midler a/k/a Luke Newsome) is a second-rate night club performer fighting to keep her place as the center of attention. She falls in with the wrong crowd - Chick La Fountain (Eddie Webster) and his cronies - and heads down a dangerous path. Albert hopes to show her the error of her ways and give her one last chance to turn her life around. And while Irish has a tendency to alienate those who could most help her - seasoned performer Helen Sternhan (Michael Hawke) for example - underneath the corsets she has a heart of gold and earns the loyalty of old friend and lovestruck Eddie (endearingly played by Carlen Kernish) and her maid, Peona (Nora Ogunleye).

Luke Newsome (Richmond drag queen Wette Midler) is stunning in red evening gown (Alex Valentin's costumes are lovely) and gorgeous Joel-Furtick wig. And her performance as Irish O'Flanagan is sweet and charming.

I'd like to come out (pun intended) and confess my crush on Jeffrey Cole who is devilishly handsome and charming in the role of the less-than-angelic Albert trying to earn his place in Heaven.

Times Square Angels is not a sophisticated story. And it doesn't need to be. It's sweetly reminiscent of  holiday classics such as It's a Wonderful Life and A Christmas Carol. Melissa Rayford deftly directs this nostalgic, heartfelt, and joyful audience-pleasing holiday gem.

There's an encore at the end - a fun sing-a-long with cast members lip syncing their hearts out to our favorite Yuletide tunes. Helen's  Auld Lange Syne as the swan song is nostalgic and tender. A perfect way to end a show about second chances, and the true meaning of the holiday spirit.

You can catch Times Square Angel through December 21, 2019. To purchase tickets click here.

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