Mrs. Smith’s Broadway Cat-Tacular! OFF-BROADWAY REVIEWS

Photo: Dan Norman
  • NY TIMES

  • Opening Night:
    July 20, 2015
    Closing:
    August 3, 2015

    Theater: 47th Street Theatre / 304 West 47th Street, New York, NY, 10036

    Synopsis: 

    Mrs. Smith is a woman on the verge of a cat-based breakdown — in search of her missing cat, Carlyle. To overcome the grief and rage of this “personal apocalypse,” she’s tried psychoanalysis, New Age therapies and, now, mounting a Broadway-style musical spectacular where her bizarre life story is re-enacted in delirious song and dance. With the aid of her dapper Broadway Boys, Mrs. Smith puts her laugh-out-loud spin on the perilous highs and lows of fame, fortune and superstardom.

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  • NEW YORK TIMES REVIEW OF Mrs. Smith’s Broadway Cat-Tacular!

    ‘Mrs. Smith’s Broadway Cat-Tacular!,’ a Ziegfeld-Style Portrait

    Neil Genzlinger

    July 28, 2015: “Mrs. Smith’s Broadway Cat-Tacular!,” at the 47th Street Theater, is a decent drag show, but it needs more “cat,” or something, to really earn that “tacular.” David Hanbury, who created it, has been working his Mrs. Smith character for ages and by now has her down to a well-defined, confidently rendered portrait. She’s a grande dame on the high-strung side, with 14 husbands in her past and a fierce attachment to her cat, Carlyle, who has been missing, in this show’s conceit, for two and a half years. The search inspires her to mount a Ziegfeld-style show in which she intends to tell her life story, occasionally mention the lost cat and in general achieve a catharsis. “Tonight I’m going to cathart all over you,” she promises. That’s a pretty broad premise, and Mr. Hanbury uses it to visit the repertories of Barbra Streisand, Liza Minnelli and assorted other drag-show favorites. He has a stronger singing voice than many in the genre, and though none of his renditions will make you forget the performers who made the songs famous, they’re solid enough. A Bette Midler-style “Do You Want to Dance?” is oddly poignant, and a parody of “The Ladies Who Lunch,” part of a long story about performing for Pat Nixon, lands pretty well.

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