REVIEW – Kinky Boots – Broadway San Jose

High on pomp, sparkle and sass, Broadway San Jose’s Kinky Boots strutted into Downtown on Tuesday with the energy and attitude befitting the award-winning show. It’s a show of spectacle, timely reminders of acceptance,  and of course the kinkiest of boots and while a cohesive, talented cast appeared on the stage, the show certainly came dangerously close to my own personal threshold for over-the-top, cheerleady, rah-rah positivity. I love the message. We need the message. But, the vehicle for the message at times just felt like overkill to me.

My minor intolerance aside, the show was absolutely entertaining. There were a lot of highlights throughout and the character choices, vocal acrobats, and comic timing by the actress playing Lauren,  rated among my favorites. Her commitment to getting the laugh and telling her story really was a thing of beauty.

Speaking of beauty, Lola was undeniably delicious. Vulnerable and strength personified, he rocked the ballads as easily as the drag anthems. Our lead actor and his entire ensemble of Angels worked the brilliant fashion and the exceptionally clever and unique choreography down to  last sequin. As one who is impossibly heel-challenged and has had her land mammal card revoked many a time, I couldn’t help but be amazed that these men not only walked and danced in stiletto boots, but effortlessly  owned it. Not a bead of sweat, no shortness of breath, no stray notes, steps or lapse in attitude. Not even a wardrobe malfunction as they unabashedly, beautifully sashay in their skin-tight vinyl, beaded bras, and thigh highs.  Just gorgeous.

There’s excellent chemistry amongst the entire cast and they execute song, staging and drama across the board. Don wins us over with his testosterone marinated arc, George has some great scene stealing moments, and Charlie Price is sufficiently talented though his part seemed less well written than I think  it could have been.

The show’s score is composed of totally 80’s cheese, over the top boy band ballads and up beat synthesized dance music. While the lyrics moved the plot forward I was actually a bit let down musically. It wasn’t unpleasant by any means, just weaker and less memorable that I would have expected considering the talented the music and lyrics.

True, it was no standing ovation for me, but I think if you just brace yourself for the moral message overdose  you’ll find it a good, fun night out. 3 ½ jewels out of 5 in the review tiara for a sexy, big-hearted, big-booted musical. Kinky Boots plays through Sunday, January 29th, 2017 at the San Jose Center for the Performing Arts in Downtown San Jose.

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