We love you Conrad, and we'll be true,
When you're not with us, we're blue,
Oh Conrad we love you!"
That little ditty has been stuck in my head since seeing Bye Bye Birdie at the Chanhassen* last night. This is the first time this classical musical from the 1960s has played on the Chanhassen stage, and the first time I've seen it. In fact, I really only knew of it from that episode of Mad Men where Peggy imitates Ann-Margaret singing the title song of the movie, trying to live up to the early 60s ideal of womanhood (in that brilliant way Mad Men has of breaking down the social mores of the time, that aren't as different as we think from today). So the show was all new to me, and I really enjoyed it. It's a big, old-fashioned, fun musical with a huge cast and fantastic dance numbers. There's nothing deep about it, but it's highly entertaining.
|the happy couple, Rose and Albert|
(Ann Michels and Michael Gruber)
|The Telephone Hour|
It's no secret that I loved the Chanhassen's summer musical Xanadu, which was a bit of a departure for them in that it's a new musical with a smaller cast and a little bit of a wicked, sarcastic tone (which is probably why I loved it). But with Bye Bye Birdie they return to their standard (which is not a bad thing) - a classic musical with a huge cast and fun musical numbers. Playing now through March 30, it'll make your winter a little warmer and brighter.
|the town of Sweet Apple Ohio swoons over Conrad Birdie|
*I received two complementary tickets to the Opening Night of Bye Bye Birdie.