"Swing!" a Singing, Dancing Nostalgiafest.
By Skip Sheffield
Give your mind a rest and just “Swing!”
The Wick Theatre kicks off its second season with the nostalgic Big Band song and dance revue “Swing!,” continuing through Nov. 16 at the Countess deHoernle Theatre, 5901 N. Federal Highway, Boca Raton.
Most of the song and dance routines in “Swing!” are from the World War II era, but some date back to the 1930s, when the Big Band craze started.
For those of us in the Baby Boom generation, World War II was still fresh when we were growing up. There have been so many wars in the years since World War II seems innocent by comparison.
So yes, "Swing!" is unapologetically nostalgic. What makes it special are the superbly limber, agile, athletic dancers male and female. The stage is set by the 1931 Duke Ellington classic "It Don't Mean a Thing" (If It Ain't Got That Swing), and the action continues non-stop for 24 numbers, with a brief intermission and another 11 numbers concluding with a big all-star finale.
In all there are an even dozen dancers with Lindsay Bell the captain under the overall direction of Kelly Shook. Featured singers are Alix Paige and Michael Ursua and there is an onstage band led by pianist and musical director Paul Reekie. A special tip of the hat to trombonist Jason Pyle, who makes his instrument "talk" with a mute on the showcase number "Cry Me a River" with Amelia Millar and Pyle trading vocal and instrumental licks.
This show transports me back to my formative years when our father, a Big Band fan of the first order, played the music of the Dorsey Brothers, Glenn Miller, Benny Goodman, Woody Herman, Count Basie, Fats Waller and Frank Sinatra at maximum volume, much to the annoyance of our neighbors. There are few things in life as happy and optimistic than music of the Big Band era. If you need a lift, here it is.
Tickets are $58-$62. Call 561-995-2333 or go to www.thewick.org.