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LA Theater Review

New Kid in Town

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This production is an homage to the Eagles' music, combined with a story about a young man who leaves home to see the world, interpreted only through dance and the lyrics of some of the Eagles' hit songs. Performed by the Hotel California tribute band, whose generosity has brought it from worldwide, thousand-seat venues to help Blue Moon Theatre company get an opening boost for its sophomore production, the music and vocals are richly satisfying and capture every bit of nostalgia an audience could want. Dicky Lee Dickinson, Wade Hogue, Phil Rowland, Scott Fronsoe, and Steve Probst deliver versatility and tight harmonies.

Written by Shawn Hillman, the story is familiar. The new kid (Andrew Pearson) says goodbye to mom, dad, and sweet girlfriend and hits the road to make his way in the world. He get to the "Hotel California," is seduced by a "Witchy Woman" (Jen Olivares), lives "Life in the Fast Lane," and returns to the "Best of My Love." Other capable performers are Ashley Cotter, Stacy Brecht, Harris Markson, Ashley Stafford, and director-choreographer Amy Weisenhorn. Pearson and Olivares are particularly notable as lithe and graceful modern dancers.

Enhancing the production are multiple screens that shift and fade from kaleidoscopic colored lights to natural scenery that suits the music. The Western vibe of the band makes hitting the road a natural theme for the kid.

Probst's laudable vocals in "Tequila Sunrise" and "Lying Eyes" are easily matched by Hogue's delivery of "Life in the Fast Lane." The array of guitars, including a special double-neck as used by the Eagles, make for some fine sounds and a thoroughly satisfying evening at the theater.

Presented by and at the Blue Moon Theatre, 16200 E. Amber Valley Drive, Whittier. April 30–May 16. Fri., 8 p.m.; Sat., 4 and 8 p.m.; Sun., 4 p.m. (800) 838-3006. www.bluemoontheatreco.com. 


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