Friday, September 14, 2012

Laughing by the side of the road

I'm the last person who should write commentary on baseball, or a play about baseball broadcaster Ernie Harwell. But I have to admit Mitch Albom's one-act tribute to the Voice of the Detroit Tigers is an entertaining evening even for non-baseball fans like myself. Harwell, who died in 2010, was a likable character and Albom's play, Ernie, which opened last night at Wealthy Theatre, captures him very well. Michigan actor Will David Young bears an uncanny resemblance to Harwell and has his sorta southern drawl down pat. Albom's script is packed with Harwell quips like "two for the price of one" (double play) or "that one's long gone" (home run.) So to paraphrase Ernie, don't "stand there like a house by the side of the road" and watch this one go by. Performances continue through next weekend.

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Grade A laughter

Laughing is my life's work. And I was working overtime tonight at "The Dixie Swim Club" at Grand Rapids Civic Theatre. This show has some hilarious lines such as "You couldn't wear that dress to a phone interview." In my job as a theater reviewer, I see all sorts of humor. Slapstick. Campy. Insulting. Vulgar. But my favorite is witty repartee. Sassy barbs bouncing back and forth like a tennis ball. The kind of lines that sneak up and slap you silly. That's what you'll find at "Dixie Swim Club." And not a curse word in the bunch. Just good clean fun. Dive in. The water's fine.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Laugh lines

I'm not in any hurry to grow old, especially after getting a preview recently of what I will look like with a few more wrinkles. In preparation for "Dixie Swim Club," the season opening show at Grand Rapids Civic Theatre, several of us were invited into the dressing room to use makeup to accentuate our wrinkles instead of covering them up. We learned some of the techniques that makeup artists will be using to help the five actresses in the show to age 33 years in two hours. In this photo, the laugh lines of talent agent Malinda Petersen have been accented with dark makeup. That's me, right behind Malinda. I'm a little concerned that I may have even more serious laugh lines since I've been Laughing for a Living for more than a decade. Oh well, every job has its downside. Check out some more photos from our evening of aging on Mlive. "Dixie Swim Club" opens Friday and continues through Sept. 22. It's about five women whose friendship survives 50 years, pregnancy, divorce, hurricane and dementia. Now that'll give you some worry lines!