Friday, July 12, 2013

Character Man opens tonight in Florida.

With all the excitement going on in our lives, I've neglected to update you on Jim Brochu's new show, which we tested out here a couple of times, in cabaret settings, but which now is a full two-act musical, opening tonight at the Broward Stage Door Theater in Coral Springs, Florida, a kind of home away from home for the both of us.

(Hi, Jim! Break a let tonight! Hi, Dee! Thanks for taking care of Jim!)

Today's timely Stephen Hanks BroadwayWorld review of the Metropolitan Room performance a couple of weeks ago, confirms the idea -- my bolding:
About halfway through Jim Brochu's Saturday, June 29 performance at the Metropolitan Room of his new show Character Man, I realized I was witnessing what was probably the best cabaret show I'd seen this year, and perhaps was one of the best in my almost three years of reviewing cabaret. By the time the show ended, I had changed my mind. Not because the show fell apart in the second half, but because what Jim Brochu had created (and is opening tonight at the Broward Stage Door Theatre in Coral Springs, Florida, where it will be performed until August 11) was more than a cabaret show. 
Character Man is a delightful, extremely well-crafted, Off-Broadway theater piece that is destined for a run that might rival his critically-acclaimed one-man Zero Mostel tribute show, Zero Hour, which played throughout the country between 2006-2012 and earned Brochu 2010 Drama Desk and Helen Hayes Awards.
Woo hoo! We agree!

It's also what Robert Bartley, with whom he worked on the "Broadway Backwards" show at The Palace, said when he saw the material

Jim portrayed Zero Mostel, but he's not Zero. He is totally just himself. As a kid working selling orange drink in all the theaters, he was among them but he wasn't one of them. He was the kid with his nose pressed up against the window.

But, as if hanging out in the room playing poker while the show is going on, in his voice you can catch their voices and baggy pants inflections as he tells their stories. He's making us feel as if we're there -- which is exactly how Zero Hour worked. You felt Zero. You didn't just see him.

Stephen Hanks, who wrote this review is one of the most respected reviewers of cabaret. He goes to everything. He also sees every stage show. He's a lover of the art form. To get this kind of response from him really means something. So, thank you, Stephen. You have excellent taste!

Jim, I wish I could be there. I love you.

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