Suds: The Rockin' 60s Musical Soap Opera
Reviewed by David Kashimba
Photo by Jon McNally

Walnut Creekís Center REPertory Companyís latest production, Suds: The Rocking 60s Musical Soap Opera, is everything its title says it is and more. There are plenty of soap and suds in this musical set in a Laundromat, and the music features over 30 of the best 60s tunes, including Chapel of Love, Do You Want to Know a Secret, Do Wah Diddy Diddy, I Will Follow Him, Itís My Party, Johnny Angel, Our Day Will Come, Respect, Secret Agent Man, These Boots Are Made for Walking, We Can Work it Out, Wishing and Hoping, You Canít Hurry Love and many more favorites of the time.

The songs are sung by a talented cast to the beat of a live band and done in the style of the original artists. Adding to the musicís entertainment value is the way each song is introduced. Cindy, played by Beth Wilmurt, works at a neighborhood Laundromat. Her soap opera character, taken to a comic extreme, is introduced in conjunction with the first song, Please Mr. Postman, where Steve Gunderson, as the postman, delivers a series of letters informing her that everything that could go wrong in her life has.

When the news sends her into a suicidal frenzy that has her trying to kill herself by tying dirty laundry around her neck, which she feeds into a washing machineís wringer cycle, two angels come to her rescue and try to return her to the cycle of life.

Michelle Mais plays the senior angel called Marge and Cynthia Myers is angel trainee Dee Dee. Eventually we meet the angel supervisor also played by Gunderson who plays multiple roles and is one of Sudsí writers along with Melinda Gilb, Will Roberson and Bryan Scott.

This show is pure fun and entertainment for any age group, but those of us who grew up singing these songs while pining over Mr. or Ms. Right enjoy the double-edged sword of reliving the nostalgia of our past with its bag of mixed emotions and laughing at ourselves at the same time. This is the beauty of a comic script combined with old-fashioned rock-and-roll Ė you laugh until you cry.

For tickets or more information call (925) 943-7469 or visit www.dlrca.org.

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