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Five Course Love

a Musical Comedy
by Greg Coffin

COMPANY : Onstage Atlanta, Inc. [WEBSITE]
VENUE : Onstage Atlanta on Ponce [WEBSITE]
ID# 4847

SHOWING : February 05, 2016 - February 20, 2016



Five Course Love
Music, lyrics, and book by Greg Coffin

Three actors play fifteen different characters, in five different restaurants, on the hunt for one true love. The evening begins at Dean's Old-Fashioned All-American Down-Home Bar-B-Que Texas Eats, where a blind date goes char-broiled wrong. In the next three restaurants, we discover the mob, a strange love triangle, and a battle between bandits. We end at the Star-Lite Diner, where a waitress pines for her true love and gets a little help from Cupid in making her dreams come true.

Performances February 5 - 20, 2016
Friday and Saturday 8pm
Sunday 3pm

music director Patrick Hutchinson
director Geoff Uterhardt
choreographer Misty Barber
Drums & Percussion L. Gerard Reid
understudy Adam Bailey
Barbie, Sofia, Gretchen, Rosalinda and K Hannah Lake Chatham
understudy Jamie Lynn Perniciaro
Matt, Gino, Klaus, Guillermo and Clutch Daniel Pino
Dean, Carlo, Heimlich, Ernesto and Pops Zip Rampy
Click to Submit Cast & Crew Info for this production


One Coarse Love, Four More Tender
by playgoer
Saturday, February 6, 2016
"Five Course Love" is, much as the title implies, a musical taking place in a restaurant in which five love stories play out. The first four end unhappily for at least one person longing for love; the last ends happily. It’s a generally cheery proceeding, with the same trio of actors playing the characters in each segment.

All the segments are in different styles, including musical styles: the first is Country-Western, the second is Italian-American, the third is German, the fourth is Mexican, and the last is 1950’s rock. This places a lot of vocal demands on the cast. Only Daniel Pino really scores in all the segments; Zip Rampy and Hannah Lake Chatham have voices that don’t suit all the material they’re required to sing (although they do all their numbers ably). Still, Googie Uterhardt has directed the cast to sell the material, with lots of comic touches that nearly all land squarely. It’s a fun show.

Katy Clarke has designed a lovely, workable set that has the look of a rustic Italian restaurant with an Eros graphic on the wall, with the terrific touch of a pair of swinging doors shaped like a heart. A pass-through to the kitchen in back has silhouettes of cooking utensils to start, then has locale-appropriate props pulled in on a clothesline to set each scene. A table and chair set downstage right and another up left are occasionally joined by a booth rolling in from stage left. It works well, although Elisabeth Cooper’s lighting design is perhaps too ambitious, since the actors’ faces are inconsistently lit in several sections.

Trey Harrison’s costumes set each scene and define each character with humor and clarity. Numerous props, by Bobbie Elzey and Sara Lynn Herman, add greatly to the hilarity of many moments. Two hobby horses almost become characters of their own, thanks to their design and to the touches of movement that Mr. Uterhardt and choreographer Misty Barber have invented for them. The dances are uniformly entertaining, and the band, led by music director Patrick Hutchison, always sounds great.

The first act ends in a somewhat baffling manner. The German segment involves S&M, highly suggestive props and lyrics, and bisexuality. The ménage à trois ends badly for the female, who laments in a fairly forgettable downbeat ballad. That seems to be the end of the act, then the initial line of the Mexican segment is given. The start of the second act plays off this unsatisfying first-act ending in a playful manner, which only partially redeems the let-down we were left with.

Googie Uterhardt has added a lot of inventive touches to the script, and his actors have given their all to make his fun-house vision of the show come to life. Mr. Piro is a delight to view in all the segments; Ms. Chatham creates a variety of characters, with the final one truly touching the heart; and Mr. Rampy becomes the human embodiment of the Cupid figure that floats across the pass-through opening each time love enters the room. Could a date night-inspired show be more perfect for a date night? [POST A COMMENT REGARDING THIS REVIEW]


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