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The equity national tour of A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder is playing at the Ahmanson Theatre in Los Angeles through 1 May. You are not going to want to miss out on this rollicking fun and ingenious musical romp starring John Rapson and Kevin Massey. So grab yourself a cuppa and keep reading…
|Company. Photo: Joan Marcus.|
A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder won the 2014 Tony Awards for Best Musical, Best Book of a Musical, Best Direction of a Musical and Best Costume Design. They also won the 2014 Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Projection Design (Aaron Rhyne). And after seeing last week’s opening night performance I am convinced each of those awards was well deserved.
In case you never heard of the musical during its too brief run on Broadway, the show focuses on a young man (Massey), living in a shabby Clapham flat, who discovers he is a distant relation to the illustrious D’Ysquith family and ninth in line to the earldom. So he does what any sensible leading character in a musical comedy would do and subsequently eliminates all the competition (played by Rapson) while romancing his mistress and future wife (Williams/Eller). And along the way the audience is sure to be holding their sides from laughing so much.
|John Rapson & Kevin Massey. Photo: Joan Marcus.|
This show is a fantastic showcase for leading men Rapson and Massey. John Rapson plays 8 D’Ysquith family members (male, female, young, old)! And he is hilarious and genius making all eight characters unique and memorable in their own right. My particular favorite was his turn as Lord Adalbert with his chemistry and comedic timing with Kristen Mengelkoch who plays his wife, Lady Eugenia, is priceless! Unfortunately just as humorous as Lord Adalbert is, Rapson’s turn as Major Lord Bartholomew is over-the-top awkward with excessive padding and crassness. Kevin Massey as the narrator/protagonist is on stage 99% of the time and has some of the best lines and great chemistry with not only Rapson but also the two leading ladies (Kristen Beth Williams & Adrienne Eller) who both sing like angels. Their second act number, “I’ve Decided To Marry You”, is a riot and probably earned the biggest laughs and applause of the night.
If you are still not sure if this is your cup of tea, might I remind you that this is the musical that won the 2014 Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Projection Design and the 2014 Tony Award for Best Musical. This is a musical comedy of genius proportions. I would hate to give anything away but the projections are incredibly unique and imaginative, worthy of their own applause and laughter!
So before this four star musical passes through Los Angeles, might I suggest you get yourself a couple tickets and prepare for a fabulous night on the town filled with laughter and joy. But just don’t get any funny ideas and start carrying “Poison in (Your) Pocket”. ;D
Show: A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder
Current Location: Ahmanson Theatre, 135 N. Grand Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90012
Parking: $9 @ Music Center Garage
Age Appropriateness: 10+, thematic elements and some crude humor
Disclaimer: My ticket was generously comped by CTGLA but the opinions are all my own.