Crazy for You has opened at the Chichester Festival Theatre – and it’s a smash-hit!
This riotous musical revival is jam-packed full of wonderful Gershwin tunes – including Someone to Watch Over Me, Embraceable You, I Got Rhythm, and They Can’t Take That Away from Me, and features dazzling tap dance choreography from five-time Tony Award-winner Susan Stroman (The Producers), who also directs.
This brand new production, which celebrates Crazy For You’s 30th anniversary, stars Charlie Stemp (Mary Poppins, Half a Sixpence) as Bobby, and Carly Anderson (Sunny Afternoon, Sunset Boulevard) as Polly.
See reviews from the Times, Guardian, Telegraph, The Stage and more.
Crazy For You plays at the Chichester Festival Theatre until 4 September 2022.
More reviews to follow
Crazy For You reviews
"Spine-tingling musical is a giddy thrill"
"Instantly infectious melodies, superb choreography and irresistible comedy are met with astonishing performances in this lovable show"
"... here is a spine-tingling production with instantly infectious melodies, irresistible physical comedy and punning wisecracks (Ken Ludwig’s book zings). The crowning glory is the choreography – a whirligig of tap, ballroom, chorus-line and balletic movement, all effortlessly athletic, which makes this as much a show of dance as song."
"The production’s original choreographer, Susan Stroman, also directs and turns what might have been a long show with wooden characters into spectacular entertainment, oiled by astonishing performances from Charlie Stemp as the New York wannabe dancer Bobby and Carly Anderson as tough cookie Polly."
"A magnificent revival with songs that knock you for six"
"Watching this magnificent new staging at Chichester – directed as well as choreographed by Susan Stroman, who choreographed that 1992 production – you have to agree that Americans do seem to have the edge when it comes to pleasure-giving spectacle and songs that knock you for six."
"A near impossible amount is loaded onto the shoulders (and dancing shoes) of Charlie Stemp as the banker with a heart of gold, but, following triumphs in Half a Sixpence and Mary Poppins, he affirms his status as a 24-carat stage star. By turns rubber-limbed goofball and epitome of debonair charm, he achieves a weightlessness in his waltzes, quick-turns and tap frenzies you never tire of watching and which he seemingly never tires of delivering."
"They’d be crazy not to transfer it.'
"Rollickingly fun time”
"It’s easy to see why Charlie Stemp returned to Chichester Festival Theatre for romantic comedy musical Crazy for You, after his breakout turn in the theatre’s revival of Half a Sixpence in 2016. It’s the perfect showcase for his virtuosic combination of effortless physical comedy and exceptional dancing skills, anchored by his huge charm as a stage performer."
"You’re not coming to Crazy for You for its flimsy plot, which leans heavily on the Gershwins to propel it through its inflated run time. It isn’t up there with the best of what it’s emulating. Sometimes, though, you just want a rollickingly fun time and a burst of colour. And that’s what you’ll get."
"Be dazzled by this infectious Gershwin musical"
"With Susan Stroman, who created the original choreography, at the helm as director, this production confirms that Charlie Stemp’s Bobby Child belongs in the top rank. He was all charm in the amiable Mary Poppins, but here he rises to the challenge of a score that distils the spirit of vintage Broadway. In the opening scenes his goofiness reminds you of the comedian Lee Evans; by the end he is channelling the ghosts of the suavest leading men of yesteryear."
"Not surprisingly, it’s in the big set pieces where Stroman’s choreography shines brightest. Having seen the new Broadway production of The Music Man, another tale of an outsider mixing it with honest, plain folk, I’d say Chichester’s ensemble work is no less tight. Go along and be dazzled."
"Guaranteed to put pep in your step!"
"When shows are as good as this staging of Crazy For You, they’re little short of miraculous."
"With an exuberant company led by two fine young singers and dancers — Charlie Stemp and Carly Anderson — the story is about New York rich kid, Bobby, sent to close down a loss-making theatre in the American mid-West . . . only to fall head over heels for Polly, the straight-talking country girl who runs the tumbledown venue.
Yes, the show is blessed with fabulous songs including Someone To Watch Over Me, I Got Rhythm and Nice Work If You Can Get It.
But it’s Stroman’s choreography that blows the roof off and wins standing ovations at the end of each half."
"Who can resist Gershwin?"
"Development and detail is all in the swelling voices and frisking toes of Carly Anderson and Charlie Stemp. Anderson goes brightly (if disappointingly) from dungareed can-do to all-over frockiness; Stemp – the linchpin of the evening – tap-dances on a small silver tray, patters over tiny tables, spins and leaps and sparkles. Together, they dance into delight: first squaring up with hoedown elbowing, then swooningly back-bending in a waltz."
"This is a revival, not a rethink"
"When it comes to song and dance and liquid watchability, Stemp is the works. He plays our rich kid, Bobby Child, and he is ace. Carly Anderson matches him as Bobby’s desire, and Tom Edden again proves his reliability by playing Mr Zangler, owner of the Follies."
"Susan Stroman’s production is a riot of syncopation and fun. Zest on stage."
"Deliriously daft musical is revived in Chichester"
"This deliriously daft George and Ira Gershwin musical is just the latest gem to emerge from this venue, which has turned itself into something of a musical hit factory in recent years"
"At the heart of it all is Stemp’s dizzying turn as Child, to whom he brings an aptly childlike enthusiasm for life. He’s gawkily funny, sweetly over-eager and a terrific, feather-light, spring-heeled dancer."
"... it is simply an irrepressible and irresistible show"