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GALA Hispanic Theatre
Remaining Performances: Tuesday, July 16, 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, July 23, 6:30 p.m. Friday, July 26, 10:15 p.m. Saturday, July 27, 5:45 p.m.
They say: “Michael is 23, gay and looking for his first hookup. Aided by a fabulous fairy godmother, he searches New York for a hottie and finds much more. Singing, dancing and maybe even a Grindr production number!”
Lauren’s Take: A big gay musical—-what’s not to love? We follow the story of very average Iowa boy Michael (grounded and sincere Paul Luckenbaugh) on his journey to find a hookup in New York City. He is led through many neighborhoods and risqué bars by The Cock Fairy (Ryan Patrick Welsh) to find his perfect broad-shouldered, well-dressed man with the help of three wishes. Turns out Michael truly wants a boyfriend and the kiss of love, and maybe-kinda-probably a hookup, but mostly a boyfriend. Eric Tipler has crafted a very gay, very sexy, and very unforgettable night in New York.
All 12 men in the musical have their showcase moment, if not multiple, whether it is performing ballet in Toms shoes, playing an all too convincing-lovable-adorable-actually not creepy at all mother (Rick Westerkamp), or strutting around the stage in fishnets and a rockin’ bod. The ensemble is captivating and unforgettable—-there really is no weak link.
Biffles Robby and Bobby, played by the hilarious Pasquale Guiducci and Peyton Lynch, somehow know almost everyone and almost everything about the NYC gay bar scene. We find them both supporting and influencing a naïve Michael to approach men and be bold and brave during his one night. Because, really, who wouldn’t trust them? When Robby and Bobby’s advice only goes so far, Michael calls on The Cock Fairy to grant another wish. In “The Grindr Shuffle,” Welsh hilariously delivers kitschy pop-culture references while tap-dancing singing his ass off in hot pink sparkly heels.
Director and choreographer Craig Cipollini crafts gorgeous movements and tableaux throughout—-from when we first meet The Chelsea Boys, who deliver a riotous introduction to New York’s gay bar scene, to the final number, where we stare at a young boy center stage calling for someone normal to be normal with. In between, all One Night in New York! could really use is a more songs, and maybe a villain. However it evolves, I’m sure it will travel soon enough to a bigger, gayer stage somewhere.
See it if: If you like, um, fun. Skip it if: If you don’t.