Tuesday, June 25, 2013
Prepare for retro fashion when Flashdance The Musical hits Fair Park Tuesday
The musical is touring in honor of the film's 30th anniversary.
FAIR PARK Time to pull out those neon pink, puff-painted legwarmers.
"We can't wait to see that famous splash scene on our stage at the Music Hall," said Jo Anne Holt, publicist for Dallas Summer Musicals.
The show is a stage adaptation of the 1983 musical film Flashdance, which tells the story of 18-year-old Alex, a young woman who lives a double life in Pittsburgh as a welder by day and "flashdancer" by night. Alex dreams of attending the prestigious Shipley Dance Academy and shows the importance of holding on to your dreams no matter what the odds.
Perhaps the most memorable scene is the montage sequence of Alex training in her converted warehouse, dancing to "Maniac" by Michael Sembello.
According to the show's website, the musical is a celebration for the movie's 30th anniversary. Despite the fact the musical is based on the movie, there are some significant differences.
Cast member Kelly Felthous and her character is one of them.
"She's based a little off of Jeanie from the movie," Felthous said.
Felthous plays Gloria, a character created for the musical. She describes the character as the "blonde best friend" who is "flighty and tends to get a little bit ahead of herself." However, weaknesses aside, Gloria is a dreamer who supports her best friend and main character, Alex.
Except for Felthous' character, there are a few other changes to the show. First is the introduction of a canine role.
"That's the first thing everyone asks me," she said with a laugh.
Second is the dancing. Unlike the movie where she said there were multiple dance stunt doubles, the musical has only one. The scene in which he or she is used is a secret Felthous would not reveal.
"Our actors actually do our own dancing," she said. "It's really hard."
Felthous added that rehearsals help build stamina to successfully sing and dance simultaneously without feeling winded on stage.
The musical will feature four songs from the movie, including 16 new songs created by Robbie Roth and Robert Cary.
Felthous said the songs, both old and new, are catchy -- so catchy that if a cast member is caught humming the music, they have to put a dollar in their version of a swear jar.
"Some of the songs I can't get out of my head," she said.
While she is excited to be in the Lone Star State, Felthous said she would always be anxious before getting on stage.
"Everyone says something different," she said. "Every time I get on stage I feel nervous."
Felthous disagrees with the statement that actors cannot see the audience because of the spotlights, which eases tension. She mentioned a specific scene in the musical in which she can see the audience clearly.
"I like seeing the audience," Felthous said. "It's nice to face who you are dancing for."
Felthouse added that part of her process was to pick a specific person in the audience in the scene she referenced. It is that specific person that she is dancing for which pushes her through her anxiety, she said.
"I dance for them," Felthous said.
She said that cast members also encourage the audience to dress up in retro-wear and to dance and sing along to the show.
"Go for it," Felthous said. "It's not a musical that's reserved; we want you to have fun."
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