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Bring It On The Musical
a Musical Comedy
CATEGORY : COMEDY MUSICAL
by Jeff Whitty (book) and Lin-Manuel Miranda, Tom Kitt & Amanda Green (songs)

COMPANY : Theatre 5230 [WEBSITE]
VENUE : Chattahoochee High School
ID# 5099

SHOWING : July 20, 2017 - July 22, 2017

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PRODUCTION DESCRIPTION

Bitingly relevant, sprinkled with sass and inspired by the hit film, "Bring It On The Musical" takes audiences on a high-flying journey that is filled with the complexities of friendship, jealousy, betrayal and forgiveness.

Campbell is cheer-royalty at Truman High School and her senior year should prove the most cheertastic – she’s been named captain of the squad! But an unexpected redistricting has forced her to spend her final year of high school at the neighboring hard-knock Jackson High School. Despite having the deck stacked against her, Campbell befriends the dance crew girls and, along with their headstrong and hardworking leader, Danielle, manages to form a powerhouse squad for the ultimate competition – the National Championships.


CAST & CREW LIST
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REVIEWS

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Bring a Ton of Talent
by playgoer
Monday, July 24, 2017
3.5
Plot is not the reason to go see "Bring It On The Musical." The story is a simple one, of a cheerleader captain being moved to a new school district and having to start a new cheerleading squad from scratch that (surprise of surprises!) makes it to the national cheerleading finals against the girl’s previous school.

Lily Kren makes for a very engaging Campbell, the girl moved to a new school district. Alexis Yard, as former protegée and new rival Eva, also makes the most of her role. They’re the only two roles with significant acting opportunities; since this is pretty much a song-and-dance show, the other roles don’t have much dimension. That’s not to say the other actors don’t make an impression. All are good. Evie Lawson and Carlie Maze, as the ever-connected pair of Skylar and Kylar, have nice comedic bits, and Roberto Mendez plays his role of Twig with sweet charm, stopping the show with his rapid-fire rap. Chase Colson (as Randall) and Desiree Wilkins (as Danielle) both impress with their impeccable vocals. The only performance that didn’t ring quite true to me was that of crowd-pleasing Austin Branks, as transgender La Cienega, who played shamelessly to the audience and had a couple of clunky drop-into-a-split moments that looked like complete choreographic disasters.

Otherwise, the dance elements are a highlight of this show. Choreographer Allison Polaski has given the young cast lots of movement, and the inclusion of three legitimate female gymnasts adds a "wow" factor to the cheerleading routines. The hip-hop flavor of the dances at Campbell’s new school doesn’t come through as strongly as the cheerleading elements do, but those dances are equally energetic. Musical director Shannon O’Dowd has made sure that the vocals of these strenuously dancing actors are as strong as the dancing.

Technically, the show is not as impressive. The fixed set consists of upstage bleachers covered in translucent plastic with colored lights underneath. A few set pieces (a bed, lockers, and a wall) are rolled on and off for occasional scenes. Lighting (under the direction of Ireland McCreadie) is ambitious, but doesn’t always illuminate enough of the stage for scenes playing across its entire extent. Projections (under the direction of Dionte Mercado) are often extraneous, but use curved screens at either side of the stage, one of which is repositioned briefly for an effective shadowplay effect. Sound (under the direction of Nia Snow) has all the advantages and disadvantages of a miked show, with muddy moments, squawks, and late microphone turn-ons marring the general clarity of the vocals.

The show moves with sprightly verve. Ashton Pickering, assistant director (assistant to whom? the web site doesn’t clarify, and the QR scan code provided instead of a program wasn’t of any help to me), aside from blithely ignoring posted warnings of not bringing food into the auditorium, runs the show with competence, although the act openings are a little tricky, with music at low volume not capturing the audience’s attention immediately.

This is a thoroughly engaging production of a minor show that seems targeted at high schools, considering its near-total lack of adult characters. Theatre 5230 has put together an amazing array of talent and has energized the triple-threat performers into an impressive ensemble. Lily Kren is the unabashed star, and does a wonderful job of carrying the show, but she is helped by a troupe of supporting players that seem willing and able to carry one another on their shoulders (which is something many of them do in cheering segments). [POST A COMMENT REGARDING THIS REVIEW]


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