The Play's the Thing

MacKenzie and I had the opportunity last week to head up to Bear Lake to see Loralee perform in "Thoroughly Modern Millie." It was a good time. The cast of the show is pretty small, so the bit players had to play several different roles. The backup stenographers even had to sell concessions, and actors doubled as stagehands. I suppose this helps keep costs down, and since Garden City is a small town, there probably isn't a large pool of potential players. But the smallness of the cast and venue creates an intimate performance.

In the show, Millie is a small-town girl from Kansas who's trying to make it in 1920's New York City. It's kind of like "Coyote Ugly", except Millie becomes a stenographer instead of a bar dancer, and wants to marry a rich guy instead of becoming a songwriter. On second thought, maybe it's really not that much like "Coyote Ugly" at all.

Loralee played Muzzy, an aging songstress that has a late-arriving but pivotal plot role. The scene where she poses as a young orphan new to the city got the loudest reaction of the night (in part because her fans packed the theater that night, but also because it's pretty funny). Here she is:

(Loralee, is that your kid?)

MacKenzie and I are pretty much Loralee groupies by this point. We've also seen her in "The King and I" and the local Christmas Cantata, which MacKenzie was also in. She's pretty good.

My favorite part of the play, though, was the Asians. Ms. Meers, the innkeeper, turns her "l's" into "r's" beautifully, and even switches the accent on and off as necessary. Some may call it offensive, but I laughed every time she answered the phone with "Hotel Priscirra." I also look forward to the Orympics this summer. Ms. Meers also had two Chinese workers, who spoke (and sang in) that language through most of the play (at least, they pretended to be doing so. I cannot confirm whether the provided translation was correct).

Overall, this is a great production, worthy of a trip to Garden City this summer. Go check it out.


  1. I too enjoyed this play. It actually reminded me of my days in Bugsy Malone. It had the flapper clothing, a speakeasy scene and a side plot with oh-so-un pc Asians laundry people.

  2. Oh, and the bathroom stalls didn't have doors. It was very disturbing but seeing as the play was over an hour from our house, and we went early to get raspberry shakes, and then a two hour play and another hour drive home - I had to be brave. I would hate to be a boy.