Almost everyone at some time in their lives searches for the meaning of life. But only Pippin is a Prince and son of King Charlemagne. Having just graduated from University Pippin launches his quest surrounded by a group of dazzling performers called simply “The Players.” He at first explores life as a warrior but soon finds war deeply disturbing. Then as a healthy young man he begins to vigorously explore sex. It is fun, of course, but not particularly fulfilling. By the end of Act One Pippin reaches the point where he launches open rebellion against his father the King. The show Pippin is a masterfully crafted tale of one man’s journey through life and is a story woven with a wide and poignant net.
As currently being told nightly on stage at L.A.’s Pantages Theatre Pippin is quite probably the most magical and awe inspiring show in the world. In theatre there are bad shows, good shows and great shows. But Pippin reaches beyond the stars and is a true must see show. It is the story, it is the staging, it is the direction and the music and the cast; it all sets the standards for musical theatre.
Sasha Allen is simply spectacular as the “Leading Player.” Her voice once took her to the top five in the hit NBC television show “The Voice” but her on stage performance tells me that Sasha Allen is at the top of her art not only with her voice, but with her movement and style. Indeed all of “The Players” put on a near non-stop demonstration of super human mind blowing utterly fascinating and undeniably riveting performances.
But it was the multi Tony and Emmy award winning legendary comedian and actress Andrea Martin who so enthralled the audience that the show was halted in the middle of Act One for a long, loud and beautiful standing ovation. Such an event is a true rarity in musical theatre but it was clearly well deserved for Andrea Martin.
In the end Pippin finds himself and his purpose in life. For the audience the purpose of “Pippin” is pure unrelenting enchantment.
“Pippin” also raises the question, just who exactly are “The Players?” In the show they are a mind boggling assembly of richly talented performers, but I mean in the metaphorical sense, who are “The Players?” I decided they represent demons that taunt and cajole everyone. That is just my theory, you watch the show and you decide. Whatever your decision you will be irrevocably entertained.
Pippin is running now through November 9th at The Pantages Theatre, 6233 Hollywood Boulevard, Los Angeles, California 90028. Show times are Tuesday through Friday at 8:00 pm, Saturdays at 2:00 pm and 8:00 pm and Sundays at 1:00 pm and 6:30 pm. Reservations may be made online at: www.HollywoodPantages.com or by calling 1-800-982-2787. Do not miss this show.
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Copyright © 2014 Ron Irwin