Some critics have pointed to 1992 as the year the great American musical returned to Broadway domination, banishing the lugubrious European musicals of the preceding decades permanently to the backseat.
The central reason is "Crazy for You," a buoyant and jubilantly old-fashioned musical that's filled with songs by George and Ira Gershwin. It was the biggest show on Broadway that year, one of the biggest of the 1990s. Andrew Lloyd Webber hasn't created a major hit since then.
"Crazy for You" is the next entry in the Broadway season at Players Theatre of Sarasota. It opens this week and runs through Nov. 3.
Ken Ludwig, who's best known for "Lend Me a Tenor" and "The Game's Afoot" that Asolo Rep staged last season, started with the Gershwin chestnut "Girl Crazy," adapted and the classic boy-meets-girl and added some of the best Gershwin songs from other musicals.
The result is an ebullient musical filled with some of the best songs ever written, including "Someone To Watch Over Me," "I Got Rhythm," "Nice Work If You Can Get It," "They Can't Take That Away From Me," "Bidin' My Time" and "Embraceable You." Jared E. Walker directs and Kyle Turoff is the choreographer. Logan O'Neill stars as Bobby Child who dances his way into the heart of Polly Baker, who's played by Kathryn Parks.
Details: Through Nov. 3, The Players Theatre, 838 N. Tamiami Trail, Sarasota. Show times: 7:30 p.m. June Tuesday-Thursday and Saturday, 2 p.m. Sunday. Tickets: $25-$30. Children $12. Information: 941-365-2494, www.theplayers.org.
-- Marty Clear