Sunday, July 15, 2007

The People vs. Mona

Photo/Randy Morrison

The People vs. Mona is about as plausible as an episode of Perry Mason, but (a) that's what it was styled after and (b) this one's an endearing, bluesy musical. If you're watching a musical, your belief is already pretty well suspended, so settle back in your seat and enjoy the lively tunes and livelier characters that Jim Wann and Patricia Miller are interrogating for tonight's entertainment. The plot's more elaborate than the set or costume changes, all of which happen in the middle of the action, so your focus is never distracted from the ensemble: there's the operatic Officer Bell (David Jon Wilson) and the sultry Tish Thomas (Marcie Henderson); over there's our cheerful Indian motel owner, Patel (Omri Schein), and in another corner, our take-no-sass judge, Ella Jordan (Natalie Douglas). The three leads, our defense, prosecutor, and defendant (Richard Binder, Karen Culp, and Mariand Torres) are also great singers, but they're actually a bit too normal in the context of this self-satirizing show. But that's no reason to dismiss this case: The People vs. Mona is a grand ole time.

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