Mom Theatre Blogger: TRIP OF LOVE: Show Review by Robin Gorman Newman

tripofloveLaugh-In (the retro tv show) meets Las Vegas at TRIP OF LOVE, the fluffy, yet entertaining dance musical celebrating the biggest hits of the ‘60s, that aims to take you on a “trip,” literally, at Stage 42.

Created, directed and choreographed by James Walski, TRIP OF LOVE stars Joey Calveri (Broadway’s Rock of Ages), Kelly Felthous (Flashdance, Nat’l Tour), Dionne Figgins (Broadway’s Motown), Brandon Leffler (Broadway’s On the Town), Austin Miller (“Grease: You’re The One That I Want”), Tara Palsha (Vegas! The Show, Las Vegas), and Laurie Wells (Broadway’s Mamma Mia!), with Yesenia Ayala, Colin Bradbury, Bo Broadwell, Kyle Brown, Ian Campayno, Whitney Cooper, Alexa De Barr, Daniel Lynn Evans, Lisa Finegold, Ashley Blair Fitzgerald, Steve Geary, Daryl Getman, Jennifer Gruener, Colby Q. Lindeman, Connor McRory, and Kristin Piro.

The one hour, 50 minutes musical (with one intermission) features 28 of the biggest hits of the ‘60s, including “Blowin’ In The Wind,” “Born To Be Wild,” “California Dreamin’,” “I Saw Her Standing There,” “These Boots Are Made For Walkin’,” “White Rabbit,” “You Don’t Own Me” and many more.

The show has a legion of devoted fans — I sat next to a woman who was gleefully seeing it for the tenth time and was dancing in her seat.  She confessed she loved the music…it took her back to a time in her life that she relished reliving.

The musical offers up plenty of eye candy, featuring a talented, hard-working ensemble of appealing singers and hard-bodied dancers, many of whom strut their stuff whether shirtless, in hot pants, or gyrating in a bikini.

There is a loose story line of boy meets girl, then boy goes off to fight in Vietnam, which is more evident in Act 2, which holds together better than Act 1 which often appears more showgirl/boy act. This is not to say the cast isn’t talented.  Laurie Wells, opens the show and appears throughout as if the “wisdom keeper,” though her songs don’t necessarily translate as such, but her voice is rich and she projects a lovely, commanding presence.  And, Bahiyah Hibah has sass to spare in “These Boots are Made for Walking.”  David Elder smolders in ‘The Girl from Ipanema,” as does both Joey Calveri and Tara Palsha in ‘Venus.”

There’s no shortage of visual stimulation either, given the psychedelic, out there fantastical color projections of flowers and butterflies, and scenes with a rising hot air balloon and surf boards and a simulated ocean scene.

The choreography is ambitious and varied, and the dancing is impressive, with some beautiful numbers.

If you can abandon expectation, and settle into the flower child aura of the show, it’s quite escapist and enjoyable overall.

TRIP OF LOVE is directed and choreographed by James Walski (Saturday Night Fever, Starlight Express) and features scenic design by Tony Award winner Robin Wagner (The Producers, Dreamgirls), and costume design by Tony Award winner Gregg Barnes (Aladdin, Kinky Boots). TRIP OF LOVE is produced by Makoto Deguchi (Blue Man Group: Tubes), and had its world premiere in April of 2008 at the Theatre Brava! in Osaka, Japan.

Tickets for TRIP OF LOVE are available at


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