Developed by Richard Hopkins, Rebecca Hopkins, Jim Prosser
Directed by Dennis Courtney
Florida Studio TheatreÕs Goldstein Cabaret
1241 N. Palm Ave., Sarasota, 941-3366-9000
Jan. 6 through March 25, 2012

"Shake, Rattle & Roll" is the closest to a concert show that FST has staged in its Cabaret. ThereÕs relevant patter but nothing like a script. Four singing musicians (Eric Scott Anthony, Jonathan "Jon" Brown, Dominick Cicco, Casey Genslet) with terrific onstage percussionist (the man on the sticks) Tony Bruno mainly play and vocalize. ThereÕs no evidence of a choreographer offstage. And for folks who like classic rock and roll, the songs donÕt need decking out, just playing and singing, albeit dramatically. They get plenty to like here.

"Rock Around the Clock" began the rock craze in the mid 1950s and begins the journey here. Appropriate attention goes to the songs made popular by teen-agers at after-school haunts. Earnest young Casey Genslet comes to the fore in such pieces as "ItÕs So Easy to Fall in Love." Dom Cicco, eldest of the singers, shows he can still rock with the best throughout the show. He also gets to explain some of the now quaint situations, like a shotgun wedding, in some of the songs. In his debut performance at FST, Eric Anthony sings the majority of ballads. They seem made for his sweet sound, even as he veers from rock with the poetic narrative about Barbara Allen or gets back on track with "Blue Suede Shoes." Jon Brown also does a ballad ("Donna") but, more typically, the kind of songs told to gals like "Good Golly Miss Molly".

The programÕs a mix of songs made by or made famous by the likes of Holley, Elvis Presley, Chuck Berry, Bill Halley, Ritchie Valens. They were black and white, proponents of mainly one kind of music or a mixture that led to the shaking, rattling, and rolling extolled in this program. 

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