Northwest NEWS

June 7, 1999


5th Avenue's 'Guys and Dolls' a sure bet

by Deborah Stone

   Frank Loesser's award-winning musical Guys and Dolls has come to Seattle's 5th Avenue Theatre for a three-week run. This 1950s enduring and endearing story of gamblers and their molls features an all-new production guaranteed to dazzle and entertain audiences of all ages.

   With Director Steven Beckler's snappy New York-style staging, luscious period costumes, larger-than-life sets, and a talented cast, this Guys and Dolls hits all the right marks. Based on a Damon Runyon story, the show spins the tale of gambling kingpin Nathan Detroit (Matthew Arkin); his longsuffering fiancée showgirl of fourteen years, Miss Adelaide (Barbara Passolt); handsome high roller Sky Masterson; and proper mission worker Sarah Brown (Kim Lindsay), who is destined to reform Sky.

   This tight and together production hums along smoothly, allowing audiences to treasure and savor each celebrated tune. The choreography (originally Christopher Chadman's, but reworked for 5th Ave. by John MacInnis) is a nonstop whirlwind of breathlessly exciting steps, all executed by performers who really look like they're enjoying themselves to the hilt.

   The supporting cast provides added strength to the show, with a special nod to Kevin Ligon as Nicely-Nicely Johnson, Ruth Williamson as Salvation Army General Cartwright, and Bob Dorian as mission worker Arvide Abernathy. Ligon's renditions of "Sit Down, You're Rockin' the Boat," "Guys and Dolls," and "Fugue for Tinhorns," are some of the production's most memorable tunes.

   Guys and Dolls is a sure bet for an evening of fun and guaranteed to leave audiences with some warm memories. The show runs through June 13. For ticket information, call 206-292-ARTS.