Friday, March 23, 2007
Plain and Fancy
The Eureka Theatre is a small playhouse in the back of the Embarcadero Center complex on Jackson Street.
Its main tenant is an interesting local troupe called 42nd Street Moon that specializes in "concert versions" of obscure Broadway musicals spanning the entire 20th century (click here to get to their website and see about tickets).
This week and next they are presenting "Plain and Fancy," a successful-but-then-forgotten 1955 musical that the program essay calls "the best Rodgers and Hammerstein musical not written by Rodgers and Hammerstein."
It deals with a romantic couple of sophisticates from Manhattan who go to sell some family land in Pennsylvania Amish country, and get involved in some serious romantic melodrama with mismatched lovers, not to mention the usual cultural clashes.
It's an unusually gentle musical that doesn't stray into the sentimental. The production, as is usual with this troupe, plays the piece straight and it's well worth a visit.