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Match Play is a golf/suspense novel. Dust of Autumn is a bloody one set in upstate New York. Prairie View is set in South Dakota, with a final scene atop Rattlesnake Butte. Life in the Arbor is a children's book about Rollie Rabbit and his friends (on about a fourth grade level). The Black Widow involves an elaborate extortion scheme. Doggy-Dog World is my memoir. And ES3 is a description of my method for examining English sentence structure.
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My newest novel, Happy Valley, can be found here.

Thursday, October 30

The Producers

“Another opening, another show,” as the Kiss Me Kate cast sang. And we were treated to another wonderful show at the Arizona Broadway Theatre, this time, Mel Brooks’ hilarious The Producers. This show kicked off the tenth season for ABT, and if The Producers is any indication of the quality of the rest of season Ten, we’re in for a great year. I’m continuously amazed at the constant improvement ABT has managed from season One to the present, becoming ever more professional in all elements of musical theatre—the singing and acting, of course, but especially the choreography, set design, and costuming. Kurtis Overby, the choreographer, has brought Broadway-quality dance to the Valley, and Nick Mozak, who does the set designs, keeps me in awe with what he does with the relatively tiny stage at ABT. For example, one of the sets for The Producers is the office of Max Bialystock, with desk, small safe, and small leather divan. When Max and Leo first meet the Swedish beauty Ulla, they hire her as secretary and general office cleaner. So Ulla takes it as one of her duties to paint the office white. The complete set is now white, right down to the safe and the leather sofa, which means that Nick Mozak had to build two identical sets with identical props, one pre-white and one white. This is in addition to the three or four other sets for different locations. All costumes and props are created by the ABT artisans. When Max and Leo’s musical Springtime for Hitler opens, five gorgeous ladies enter in outlandishly beautiful dresses and accessories, all created for just this show. Highlights of the show? Nicole Benoit as the tall, voluptuous Ulla sings “When You Got It, Flaunt It,” and does she ever have it and did she ever flaunt it. In what has to be a really tough role, Michael McAssey was outstanding as the old lecher Max Bialystock. One of the dance segments had a dozen of Max’s geriatric Little Old Lady financial backers doing a tap routine with the legs of their walkers. Hilarious. Probably the only weak spot in the show was Jared Mancuso as the OCD Leo Bloom. His voice wasn’t up to par with the rest of the cast. Overall, though, The Producers rates five stars out of five. Now I can’t wait to see what ABT will do with their fourth show, Les Miserables, scheduled for end of February through early April.
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