by Beki Pineda
I LOVE YOU/YOU’RE PERFECT/NOW CHANGE – Book and Lyrics by Joe DiPietro; Music by Jimmy Roberts; Directed by Seth Caikowski. Produced by BDT Stage (5501 Arapahoe, Boulder) through November 31. Tickets available at 303-449-6000 or bdtstage.com.
For those of you who were not privy to view this show during its four-year run at the Garner Galleria Theatre at the DCPA in Denver, here’s a second chance. A combination of short sketches and story songs, LOVE/PERFECT explores the persistent human search for love in all its forms. Starting with first dates (“A Stud and a Babe”), progressing to boring dates (“Single Man Drought”), then moving on to more solid relationships (“I Will Be Loved Tonight”). It explores wedding jitters (“Wedding Vows”) and “Always a Bridesmaid.” Parents with new babies are especially annoying (“The Baby Song”) and it doesn’t get any better when the kids get older (“On the Highway of Love”). Ah, but the sweetness of a solid love that lasts (“Shouldn’t I Be Less in Love With You” – my favorite song in the whole show) makes the search all worthwhile.
The talented quartet of singer/actors who bring all this frivolity to life – Anne Terze-Schwarz, Heather Maria Doria, Brian Jackson, and Bob Hoppe – enter into the fray with enthusiasm. New material has been added to bring it more into the current social media frame of mind. After all, a lot has happened since 1996 when this was premiered Off-Broadway for a 5000 performance run. The song “We Had It All” has been replaced by “Better Things To Do” which allows an on-line couple meeting for the first time to forego the pleasures of a real relationship and cut right to the break-up and the inevitable bittersweet meeting on the street months later. A delightful pairing of songs – a guy’s promise of “I’ll Call You Soon” to the girl’s ecstatic “He Called Me” when he actually did – was cut for an awkward song about “When a Man Texts a Woman” a picture of his – you know what. The new parents in “The Baby Song” have become a same sex pair – but just as annoying with their baby talk and teddy bear battering. There are numerous references to Google, Netflix, Tinder and Lyft which were not part of the original script.
But the old favorites remain. Brian and Bob still do manly chest bumps in “Why? ‘Cause I’m A Guy.” Heather and Brian are cute as a nerdy couple wishing they were “A Stud and a Babe.” Heather makes the most of the girl who is “Always the Bridesmaid” in a deliberately frumpy dress designed by Designer Linda Morken. Bob and Anne become a couple watching a chick flick in “Tear Jerk” which finds him becoming engaged and shedding a tear or two – much to his embarrassment. Anne performs the monologue “The Very First Dating Video of Rose Ritz” for the website EndoftheRoad.com with poignancy but didn’t quite achieve the heartbreaking quality the piece deserves. Bob and Anne are sweet as a couple in a funeral parlor pick-up after their own loves are gone, ending the show on a sweet sentimental note.
For those who have not seen the show before, this will be a pleasant surprise and a fun evening. For those who have seen the show in its previous incarnations, it is like visiting an old friend.
A WOW factor of 8.5!!