Under the direction of Alan Paul, with smooth and sexy choreography from Michele Lynch, Shakespeare Theatre Company's KISS ME, KATE opened last week to a well-deserved standing ovation.
KATE, with music & lyrics by Cole Porter and book by Samuel & Bella Spewack, tells the story of a few backstage romances in the late 40s, during a touring production of Shakespeare's The Taming of the Shrew. The estranged Lilli Vanessi - the leading lady (Christine Sherrill) and Fred Graham - the director, producer, and star (Douglas Sills), battle, reconcile, and battle again. All this, while dancer Bill (Clyde Alves) and ingenue Lois (Robyn Hurder), explore the ups and downs of gambling and cheating.
All the while, we're met with an extraordinary cast of questionable characters - from dressers, to dancers, to an army general, to a pair of crooning gangsters. All of these pieces make for a fine vehicle for some of Porter's greatest songs - and he would have been proud with these performances.