Four and a half stars
ISO Printing Partners Pops, Hilbert circle Theatre, Oct. 10-12.
Engaging in every aspect, a large star-studded cast performed superbly as an ensemble delivering the nuances of the overall story and Damon Runyan’s memorable characters: a cadre of gamblers, a clutch of chorus girls, a vanguard of the Salvation Army and one of NYC’s finest. Yet it was Hal Linden who literally brought the audience to its feet in the supporting role of Arvide Abernathy with a run of hot licks on his cool clarinet during a show-stopping rendition of “Sit Down, You’re Rockin’ the Boat.” The ISO players were in top form providing the unusual opportunity for the audience “to see” the interplay between Frank Loesser’s music and lyrics and the book by Jo Swerling and Abe Burrows. Matching George S. Kaufman’s original inspired direction, ISO principal pops conductor Jack Everly equally assembled an outstanding production staff and cast for this delightful concert version of the 1950 five-time Tony Award musical.