Opening night was a little lacking in octane and light on memorization for The Golden Apple’s “Cheerful Little Earful,” but, overall, the musical lived up to its “cheerful” billing, and the audience got an earful of songs from Harry Warren’s vast repertoire.
Warren is the “famous composer you’ve never heard of.” If you’re 100 years old, you will recognize almost every one of the numbers compiled by the Golden Apple for this ambitious production.
Robert Ennis Turoff directed and wrote the book, which calls for a photo of Warren, placed center stage, and Warren’s voice-over between scenes — a literal “talking head.” It’s an amusing concept that works rather well. For example, you’ll learn that “Jeepers Creepers (Where’d you get those Peepers?)” was originally sung to a horse in a film starring Ronald Reagan.
The talented cast does a fine job of performing the diverse numbers, including the choreography by Eric Berkel, which runs from vaudeville-style tap to Latin samba.
Versatile Golden Apple favorite Berry Ayers smoothly pulls off every character, and Steve Dawson shows off his comedic skills with the help of a giant mustache in “My Gondola” and a chef’s hat in “That’s Amore.”
In short, “Cheerful Little Earful” will provide you with an enjoyable little evening.
IF YOU GO
What: “Cheerful Little Earful”
When: Runs through Nov. 27
Where: The Golden Apple Dinner Theater, 25 N. Pineapple Ave., Sarasota
Info: For ticket information, call 366-5454 or visit thegoldenapple.com.
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