"Music of the Night" Review
updated: Jan 29, 2013, 2:48 PM
By Edhat Subscriber
Last Saturday, our friends invited us to Santa Barbara High School's "Music of the Night" performance.
Having seen the school's production of The Drowsy Chaperone, we knew the talent level would be high,
and for a senior citizen price of $5, we figured we'd give it a try. Boy were we glad we went! "Music of
the Night" is not a play. It's a series of musical numbers from a variety of Broadway shows, past and
present. Being an oldie, I must admit I didn't recognize some of the more current numbers, but that
didn't take away from our enjoyment of some truly superb performances.
Musical director John Douglas and his band provided a wonderful live performance to compliment the
singers on stage.
In "The Lonely Goatherd," Christina Buchanan was lovely as Maria Von Trapp. Her voice was divine and
left us wanting more. Fortunately she returned later in the show with a moving rendition of
"Somewhere" from West Side Story. This girl has quite the career ahead of her. Mackenzie Zisser
stunned as the fast-paced, freaked-out bride who confesses she is "not getting married today" (from
Steven Sondheim's Company). Carly Cummings and Nick Blondell rounded out the number with superb
The girls weren't the only ones with the talent. Their male counterparts were equally impressive. "I Am
Africa" from The Book of Mormon stood out as a highlight, proving these boys can sing, dance and ham
it up just as well as the original Broadway cast. Keep an eye out for Tyler Feld, whose performance and
costume stole the number.
Fortunately, for the future of SBHS theater, many of the sweeter moments in the show were captured by
freshmen. Particularly noteworthy were Nolan McCarthy and Bradley DeVine in "I'd Do Anything" from
Oliver! It was one of those moments where we caught ourselves smiling, even when the song was over.
In addition to the live numbers, there are a few video vignettes, directed by Emilio Madrid. These
"shorts" included characters from the show in hilarious, out-of-context situations. The videos looked
like they were as fun to make as they were to watch.
What struck my husband and me was the amount and level of talent in this show. Back in our high
school years, there were usually a few standouts in the theater department, around which plays were
chosen to highlight those kids who carried the rest. I'm not sure what they're feeding those SBHS
students, but every cast member (2-3 dozen, maybe?) was outstanding.
Congratulations to the student directors who chose the musical numbers, cast the students,
choreographed the numbers and staged the entire show. My husband and I were very entertained and
plan to return this weekend to catch the show a second time. Bravo to SBHS for "Music of the
Night"...Broadway is alive and well in Santa Barbara!
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