IRMA LA DOUCE
May 14, 2014
Good hearted Irma La Douce excels at her job as a woman of the night (A Poule) in the Parisian streets. But like “Never On A Sunday” she wraps around a scholarly man who succumbs to her vivacious, guiltless nature.
Popularized by the 1963 film starring Shirley Mac Laine and Jack Lemmon, Irma La Duce created by Alexandre Breffot and sporting rather mediocre music by Marguerite Monnot gets a re-boot as part of City Center Encores! No problem with Encores! cast, but all in all, the show doesn’t pop like most productions. In this romp through the Parisian bar, court system and underworld, the combination of Chase Brock’s generic choreography and John Doyle’s surprisingly straight ahead directions does little to levitate the production.
Led by the clear voiced Jennifer Bowles (Irma La Douce) able Rob McClure (Nestor-Le-Mou) and an extremely congenial Malcolm Gets (Propreitor of the Bar), the action perked up during the court scene when the French Courts prosecute a living man for killing himself.
All that said, it was a pleasant enough afternoon, particularly listening to the jazzy band perched above the bar and directed by Rob Berman.
EYE ON THE ARTS, NY -- Celia Ipiotis