• A&E: New Musical a Delightful Departure for Ronnie Larsen

    In a phone interview a couple of weeks before the premiere of Come Out! Come Out!” last weekend, Ronnie Larsen cautiously hinted, This one is different…its special…it could be the best thing Ive ever done.”

  • Earn Your Gay Card: Free online course about movie musicals

    So, you think you know everything there is to know about movie musicals? What self-respecting queen can’t quote every line from “The Sound of Music,” “Mame” or “Funny Girl?” Actually, there are many out there who didn’t inherit this profoundly gay trait, but don’t surrender your “gay cards” yet, because there’s help out there.

  • Island City Stage Presents “Muscle Bears the Musical”

    South Florida theater audiences are best acquainted with playwright Michael Aman’s serious side:

  • Review: Evita — She’ll Have You Crying

    Caroline Bowman stars as Eva Peron in the traveling production of “Evita,” which recently closed at the Kravis Center and comes to Miami’s Arsht Center in May. Credit: Richard Termine

    South Florida audiences have already been treated to several rock operas this season: “We Will Rock You” spun together the song catalog of Queen with a silly science fiction plot last fall at Miami’s Arsht Center, while the angst of contemporary youth was proclaimed very loudly in “American Idiot,” featuring the music of Green Day, just a few weeks ago at the Broward Center.

  • Review: Million Dollar Quartet — A Trip Through Musical History

    I went to Kravis last night to see “Million Dollar Quartet” and forgive me but I can’t resist… Elvis was in the house. So too were Carl Perkins, Johnny Cash and Jerry Lee Lewis. These famous singers, some of the most important figures at the dawn of rock ‘n’ roll, were played by Cody Ray Slaughter, James Barry, Scott Moreau and John Countryman, starting with Elvis.

  • Screen Savor: City of Singing Angels

    Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling stand on the set of LA LA LAND.

    Presented in Cinemascope, “La La Land” (Lionsgate) is writer/director Damien Chazelle’s singing and dancing love letter to Hollywood movie musicals and Los Angeles. For fans of Chazelle’s “Whiplash,” jazz gets a big, fat, wet kiss, too.

  • Screen Savor: Sing Out!

    Theater owner Buster Moon (McConaughey) hosts a talent competition to save his theater in "Sing" by Illumination Entertainment

    There is nothing new about the 3D animated feature “Sing” (Illumination Entertainment).

    It’s a familiar and formulaic story lifted from any number of Hollywood or Broadway musicals. There’s a crumbling theater. There’s the theater’s owner, Buster Moon (voiced by Matthew McConaughey), whose lifelong love of the stage and a mission to do well by a deceased parent is the driving force behind his drive to save said crumbling theater.

    Naturally, he has a bumbling assistant, the lizard Miss Crawly (voiced by co-director and writer Garth Jennings), whose carelessness leads to a potentially problematic financial situation.

    Additionally, you will find a rag-tag assortment of characters who share a dream to make it big as a performer, in this case as singers auditioning for a talent competition. Among those characters is Meena (voiced by Tori Kelly), an elephant with a deadly case of stage-fright. Another is Rosita (voiced by Reese Witherspoon), a sow whose sizable brood and neglectful husband, deprived her of the chance to fulfill her dream. There is also a prickly (literally) teenage music snob, punk porcupine Ash (voiced by Scarlett Johansen), and a lifelong troublemaker and Rat Pack-style crooning mouse Mike (Seth McFarlane). Johnny (voiced by Taron Egerton), the sensitive gorilla son of a criminal father, and Gunther (voiced by Nick Kroll), a pig for whom singing, dancing and hamming it up makes him squeal (literally) with joy.

    And yet, in spite of not being especially engaging, and coming off as a series of separate stories that didn’t completely coalesce, “Sing” is unquestionably entertaining. It feels like a direct descendant of other colorful 2016 animated films, including “Zootopia” and “The Secret Life of Pets” (the anthropomorphized animals) and “Trolls” (the use of mostly recognizable music). It’s the kind of movie where audience members break into spontaneous applause, as if the characters on screen could actually hear them.

    As you might have guessed from the title, “Sing,” there is singing, and also dancing, interwoven with the tears and trauma. Equally as essential as the music to “Sing” is the comedy. Buster’s best friend, a sheep named Eddie (voiced by John C. Reilly) often provides some of the best comic relief to be found. The scenes with Buster and Eddie’s rich and retired actress grandmother Nana (voiced by Jennifer Saunders) and the gut-busting car wash sequence, alone, are reason enough to see “Sing.”

  • Singers Take It All Off at Empire Stage

    “It does take a special kind of performer to do the show,” explained Tim Evanicki, producer and director of “Naked Boys Singing!,” a musical revue opening this weekend at Empire Stage in Fort Lauderdale. “They have to be comfortable, 100 percent.”

  • This One’s For The Girls; Kristin Chenoweth Talks On New Album

    Whether it's been being the most glorious Good Witch around in Wicked or taking it to church on the sorely missed GCB, Kristin Chenoweth has always been all about the girl power.