Everything Anything at Marriott Theatre
...director/choreographer Marc Robin pulls out all the stops to make the best of that big stage in his production of Cole Porter’s madcap Anything Goes. The dizzying intricate choreography of Thomas M. Ryan’s wheeled set of walkways and stairways is a dance number all its own. Nancy Missimi’s lush retro costumes are fun glitz and glam: total eye candy. Robin’s big dance numbers are everything you want in a beloved white way favorite, and all aspects of this show are top shelf.
The cast revels in this silly plot of the stowaway stock broker (handsome leading man and Marriott regular Jameson Cooper) haplessly following his already engaged love, Hope (svelte and lovely Summer Smart) aboard an ocean liner. The show belongs to the Chanteuse Evangelist Reno Sweeney (triple threat Stephanie Binetti) and the enjoyably comedic and over the top Ross Lehman who takes on the role of gangster Moonface Martin. The other highlights are Gene Weygandt as the ever drunk Yale grad millionaire Elisha Whitney, Mary Ernster as Hope’s mama Evangeline Harcourt, and Patrick Lane as Lord Evelyn Oakley. This show is a period piece (who travels on an ocean liner?) that feels strikingly modern even as it shows off its bona fides as a depression era extravaganza. The lyrics about cocaine, the absurd fawning over celebrity, the televangelist style revival of Blow Gabriel Blow all feel like they could come off of today’s reality tv.
Anything Goes is a well deserved classic whose familiar, singable tunes deserve this fine treatment. There is plenty of dancing, singing and laughs for even the crankiest member of your entourage.