We’re usually pretty forgiving when it comes to bad musical theatre. There’s a secret part of us that digs an overwrought power ballad every now and then. And while we’ve never been particularly big Andrew Lloyd Webber fans, there is a secret shameful part of us that kind of enjoyed Cats. Plus, there is one Webber song that we do genuinely love – Tell Me on a Sunday, from Song and Dance. So our expectations for this show, if not exactly high, were at least middling.
What we failed to take into account, however, was that, as lovely a song as Tell Me on a Sunday is, it’s only one song. One song of about twenty. And the other nineteen aren’t so hot. Louise Pitre is an intrepid performer with a lovely voice, and she does her best with the bland material, but the show gives her so little to work with. She is all alone onstage, singing her way through a cycle of very similar-sounding songs all about a woman’s poor choices when it comes to men. That’s the “Song” part. The “Dance” part is the second act, wherein (as you’ll all have heard by now) Rex Harrington, sadly, gravely injured his Achilles tendon on opening night (his part has been taken over by Roberto Campanella).
We can’t help but wonder what, exactly, is the point of this show, and, especially, what is the point of bringing it to Toronto now? It is laughably dated, but mostly it’s just dull.