The crowd was alive in the moment, cheering for the epic lines of dialogue and the iconic choreography with an impassioned zeal and unrestrained enthusiasm! Everyone was dancing and singing along to the magnificently resonant, goosebump-producing “(I’ve Had) The Time of My Life.” An extended standing ovation peppered by shout-outs of adulation was testament that this assemblage of talent and charisma has that magical chemistry needed to deliver an absolutely exhilarating performance.
Indeed, it was yet another unforgettable evening at The Kimmel Center’s famed Merriam Theater. “Dirty Dancing: The Classic Story On Stage” will be at the Philadelphia venue from now till Sunday with just seven performances left. If you’ve been holding out, watching your budget, trying to choose the perfect show to see, one that gives you everything you could ever hope for in a live performance, this is it.
Rachel Boone (Baby) took the audience on a marvelous transformative journey as she stumbled through her summer, eventually blossoming into an accomplished dancer and falling in love. She played her part with an intriguing swirl of naiveté, awkwardness, humor, and just the tiniest pinch of sensuality.
Christopher Tierney (Johnny), on the other hand, sizzled with an exciting swagger that blanketed his insecurity. He radiated an intense heat and strutted about with an animalistic ferocity, but was always guided by his heart and could never forget he wasn’t one of the privileged. That balance of power and vulnerability made him the perfect hero.
Jennifer Mealani Jones (Penny) used her flawless dancing, electric presence, and potent acting sensibilities to elevate her principle character to a starring role status in the audience’s eyes. She was exquisitely dynamic, becoming the focal point of every scene she was in. Jennifer has that enviable spark that is going to quickly make her a household name.
As far as bringing your soul to its knees in awe, Jordan Edwin André (Billy Kostecki/Singer) has a voice that easily rivals some of the greatest vocalists of our time. His shining moment, the one that makes you gasp for breath, comes in the last few seconds of “In the Still of the Night.” A true showstopper!
Alyssa Brizzi (Lisa Houseman) was a joyous dynamo. “Lisa’s Hula” allowed the actress to unleash her spirited panache with gusto, making her character instantly transform from infuriatingly immature to absolutely adorable.
Each member of the cast brought his or her unique sparkle to the show — even Alan Scharf’s despicable Mr. Schumacher was bristling with fun. “Dirty Dancing: The Classic Story On Stage” utilizes incredible set design technology to keep the story flowing at a rollicking clip. As Jennifer Jones noted in her interview with Entertaining Options, “You get the movie and so much more!” Treat yourself to an extraordinary evening with an exceptional cast. “Dirty Dancing” is this season’s must-see spectacle!
Remaining dates and times for “Dirty Dancing: The Classic Story On Stage” [Tickets available HERE.]:
Wednesday, May 17 at 7:30 p.m.
Thursday, May 18 at 7:30 p.m.
Friday, May 19 at 8:00 p.m.
Saturday, May 20 at 2:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m.
Sunday, May 21 at 1:00 p.m. and 6:30 p.m.
“Dirty Dancing”: website • Facebook • Instagram
Note: To continue the “Dirty Dancing” celebration, you can watch the ABC-TV remake of the movie on May 24.
Related: “Jennifer Mealani Jones returns to Philadelphia to help celebrate 30 years of ‘Dirty Dancing’“