Music by Jimmy Roberts
Original Direction by Joel Bishoff
At Marriott Theatre, Lincolnshite
Loveable comedy needs no changes
The charming, witty script of I Love You, You’re Perfect Now Change remains as fresh and apt today as in1996! Only a few minimal tweaks update the original musical comedy — like using a cell phone instead of an answering machine. This deservedly is the longest running off-Broadway smash hit! (1996-2008 for over 5,000 performances.)
In varied pairings, four splendid actors — Kelly Anne Clark, Alex Goodrich, Johanna McKenzie Miller and Bernie Yon — run the gamut of relationships in a hilarious series of vignettes. Just when the audience thinks that it can’t get any funnier — it does!
Song lyrics define action. In the opening Canasta for a First Date, the couple decides to skip date one and immediately move to date two. Well why not skip that, too, and move on to the first quarrel, or the breakup, and beyond. A Stud and a Babe is self-explanatory: the pair falters between what they are and what they wish they were. And then there are the complaints: Single Man Drought and Always a Bridesmaid.
Tempting as it might be to summarize the 20 delicious, lighthearted song/scenarios, here is just one irresistible lyric about male vs. female taste in movies:
So she goes, well what movie should we do?
So I go, well that is fully up to you.
And that my friends was my one big mistake.
My movie satisfaction is mindless violent action,
Some muscle men to tussel with Stalone.
A thriller that would thrill us, with Arnold or Bruce Willis,
And lots of naked shots of Sharon Stone.
This movie here is clawing so pretty and annoying,
These flicks they make for chicks who drag their men.
I bet she gets all weepy while I get really sleepy,
No chick will ever pick the flick again.
No age or stage in life is overlooked: bad dates, meeting parents, becoming parents, family trips, and elder romance — all with humor and a few even poignant. An early tagline declared that the comedy offers “Everything you have ever secretly thought about dating, romance, marriage, lovers, husbands, wives and in-laws, but were afraid to admit.” No holds are barred. One delicious moment comes when a girl invites a guy for dinner. She offers to make his favorite meal — lasagna– and he begins to say what he will bring to complement the meal. Before he can utter the word, “wine,” she blurts out another word: “condoms.”
And who in the audience could not identify with the chaotic, delightfully choreographed family auto trip On the Highway of Love? This show-stopping sketch alone is worth the price of admission.
Beverly Friend, Ph.D.
At Marriott Theatre, 10 Marriott Drive, Lincolnshire, 847-634-0200, tickets $40-$48. 1 and 8 p.m. Wednesdays, 8 p.m. Thursdays, 4:40 and 8 p.m. Saturdays, 1 and 5 p.m. Sundays. Running time two hours and fifteen minutes, including intermission.