Kinky Boots Back in Hollywood

1434623236_h_975x250.KinkyBootsLast night my publishers gave me their two tickets to the Grammy and Tony award-winning musical Kinky Boots currently at the Pantages Theatre. IMG_6499

The red carpet was ready for celebrities and VIPs to find a spot under the bright lights, as the media captured their attendance of the Opening Night show. Some of my favorites were Jhazz Fleming who plays Young Lola. He and his proud momma soaked up the adulation of fans, as this youngster was about to make his theatrical debut in Kinky Boots. This handsome boy trained with the Newark NJ Symphony Hall Summer Performing Arts Academy as a dancer, singer and performer, before being cast in this show.

Photo by Jill Weinlein
Actress Brooke Engen with (Young Lola) Jhazz Fleming – Photo by Jill Weinlein

Fleming excitedly posed with the pretty actress Brooke Engen, the twin of lead actress Tiffany Engen (Lauren) in Kinky Boots. Brooke and Tiffany have performed in “Rock of Ages” on stage at the same time, just different venues. Tiffany played “Regina,” at the Venetian in Las Vegas, while Brooke performed in a “Rock of Ages” production for Norwegian Cruise Line.

In Kinky Boots, Tiffany Engen has the audience in the palm of her hands with her performance in “The History of Wrong Guys.” She is the new Lucille Ball, with her comic timing that has the audience laughing throughout the musical. Her quirky movements and adorable facial exaggerations deserve a standing ovation at every show.

Photo by Jill Weinlein
Corbin Bleu with fiancee Sasha Clements – Photo by Jill Weinlein

Fleming and his mother were also excited to see the charming and talented model, actor, singer, and dancer Corbin Bleu with his lovely fiancée and actress Sasha Clements. Bleu started acting in commercials at the ago of two and his modeling career took off at the age of four. Everyone knows him for his role of  “Chad Danforth” in the Emmy award-winning Disney Channel original movie High School Musical. He was in both sequels High School Musical 2  and High School Musical 3: Senior Year. With his singing and songwriting career taking off, he recently was contestant on the 17th season of Dancing with the Stars, partnering with professional dancer Karina Smirnoff.

Posing with young Fleming, I asked him, “Do you remember when you were his age enjoying all of this?” With a wink and winning smile he said to me, “I sure do” before entering the theater to take his seat.

Photo by Jill Weinlein
Actors Corbin Bleu, Jhazz Fleming, and actress Sasha Clements -Photo by Jill Weinlein

Pop icon Cyndi Lauper (Girls Just Want To Have Fun) created the music for this inspirational musical production. It’s based on a true story written by Tony Award winner Harvey Fierstein (La Cage Aux Folles, Hairspray). The musical uses a twelve-piece orchestra consisting of keyboards, percussion, bass, guitars, reeds, violin, viola, cello, trumpet, and trombone.

What makes this show so fun, beyond the outrageous costumes, stiletto shoes and outstanding set, is the cast and crew directed by two-time Tony Award winning director and choreographer Jerry Mitchell (Legally Blonde & Hairspray).

J. Harrison Ghee playing Lola is bigger than life on stage at the Pantages. The minute he takes the stage, he captivates the audience with his beauty, charm and vocal prowess. Lola’s “Angels” add to a romping good time, especially “Land of Lola” “Sex Is in the Heel” and “Raise You Up/Just Be.” The choreography of the treadmill scene is brilliant.

Adam Kaplan shined on stage as Charlie and has perfect chemistry with Lola and Lauren. The audience is rooting for this trio throughout the show.

Others worth noting are Shawna M. Hamic for her comedic talent, Jim J. Bullock as the lovable George, and Aaron Walpole as the character Don eventually accepting and embracing people for who they are. He is the first character we see before the curtain parts and the last we cheer for at the end.

Go enjoy the talented cast of Kinky Boots. It’s a playful story of a young man’s struggles to save his family shoe company and himself! This feel good ending has the audience up on their feet and clapping until the curtain closes.

The show is recommended for children 10 years old and up.

Go online now to www.HollywoodPantages.com or www.Ticketmaster.com to get your tickets, because it is in Hollywood for only two weeks.

 

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