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Best Way to See a Musical 

42nd Street Moon Theater Company

Best-of-Broadway regulars can't really be faulted for believing that musical theater consists entirely of Lloyd Webber, Wildhorn, and Rodgers & Hammerstein (Richard Chamberlain is Capt. Von Trapp!), since that's mostly what's served. But those who think musicals should be more than sentimental spectacle thank God for 42nd Street Moon. The company's staged concert versions of classic or little-known shows display affection, taste, talent, and scholarship. Artistic Director Greg MacKellan ensures the productions are among the best-directed Bay Area shows -- musical or dramatic. Occasionally, you have to allow for less-than-stellar performances in some roles, or bad selections (e.g., last year's The Grass Harp), but there's always enough artistry evident to balance out the flaws. Even the worst offerings demonstrate an adventurousness and openness that's lacking at other local companies. (The world does not need another production of A Chorus Line. Ever.) A new, bigger house this season (the Eureka) will let even more people see this group's great work.


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