Add great music together with energetic dance and a dash of David Bowie and put it in the Robert Moss Theater for the Planet Connections festivity and you have Leslie Guyton’s new production, “Wanderlust.”
Fueled by stellar performances cast-wide, it’s a fun and engaging story of life and love.
While it’s more of an experimental piece with the narrator (Colin Summers, who also sings and plays guitar during the performance) telling a heady, yet fun story of self-discovery, the average theater-goer will definitely find something to love here.
Simply put, the “band,” Cydney McQuillian-Grace (vocals), Summers, Thomas Murphy (piano), Chris Coluzzi (drums) and Josh Henderson (electric violin) are excellent. Grace has a voice that will remind many of Jewel, while Summers makes you think of Bowie and Lou Reed. Henderson stands out with booming violin work, while Coluzzi and Murphy fill out the sound nicely. The end result is a small band with a big sound.
The dancers, which consist of Rachel Garris, Alex Hernandez, Sara Ciampa and Quincy Ellis are all. The latter three all have flashes of brilliance and are entertaining and athletic throughout. It is Garris however who ultimately steals the show. Dancing throughout most of the show, she was drenched with sweat by the end of the performance. And for good reason.
She danced her heart out.
The huge smile on her face was proof she’s passionate about her craft and it showed with every twist, turn and jump.
While the overall message of life and love is a wide one, it works perfectly with the tunes and dance. Everyone in the audience can find their own place of thought regarding this performance. Although it started a bit heady in the beginning with Summers’ whimsical opener, the music, coupled with the dancing, was lighter than the bulbs hanging over the stage.
Of all the performances at the festivity thus far, this one may be the most accessible and fun. Like most of the productions, it has a message, but this is one of the few that never jams it down your throat. Instead, it allows you to simply sit back and enjoy the music and dance.
Patrick Hickey Jr.
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