Jazzy 1920s Whodunnit The Wild Party Opens 99th Season At CDC Theatre

In Andrew Lippa’s The Wild Party, decadence and excess roar across the stage in this steamy prohibition tale based on Joseph Moncure March’s 1928 narrative poem of the same name. This darkly brilliant show, featuring one of the most exciting, pulse-racing scores ever written, will open the 2017-2018 season at CDC Theatre in Cranford, NJ. This marks the 99th season at New Jersey’s oldest continuously producing community theatre.
“The musical is like a Jazz Age take on Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream; a potent cocktail of an all-night party in late 1920s Manhattan,”,says director Sean Lough. Adapted from a book-length poem written in and about the Roaring Twenties, The Wild Party tells the story of one wild evening in the Manhattan apartment shared by Queenie and Burrs, a vaudeville dancer and a vaudeville clown. In a relationship marked by vicious behavior and recklessness, mirroring the times in which they live, they decide to throw a party to end all parties. As the guests arrive, we meet an assortment of people living on the edge. Queenie and Burrs set out to make each other jealous, but Queenie begins to fall in love with her conquest named Mr. Black. After a long night of decadence, Burrs’ jealousy erupts and he comes to a violent end at Mr. Black’s hand. In the stark light of a new day, Queenie moves out into a brighter world, although not necessarily a brighter future, leaving the passed-out revelers in her wake. An award-winning score by Andrew Lippa provides excitement and drive for this tale of passions out of control. Capturing the sound of a bygone era with a nod to the present one, he makes us realize that moral decadence is not only limited to our past.
“We were blown away by the local talent at auditions”, Lough continued,  “this piece has a white-hot jazz score played to perfection by Jack Bender’s smoking-hot eight-piece band — and every role needs a real triple threat: someone who can sing like Idina, dance like Chita and act like Streep. We have amazing local talent from Cranford, Westfield, Fanwood, as well as New Brunswick and Queens. If you love film noir or suspense thrillers, Wild Party is the perfect musicalization of the dark themes that make those genres so emotional. And yet it’s as fun and fearless as anything being written for the theater today.”
The production will run from October 13 through October 28 at the theatre’s 78 Winans Ave home. Additional information about the show and how to get tickets can be found by visiting www.cdctheatre.org.

(above l-r) Nicole Boscanno as Kate, Shane Long as Burrs, Colleen Renee as Queenie and Phil Solomon as Black.