St. Petersburg Times: Weekend

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An enchanted invitation

The Show Palace Dinner Theatre show features classic Rodgers and Hammerstein songs, a little dancing and some Bob Mackie costume designs, too.

© St. Petersburg Times
published August 22, 2002

[Times photo:
Janel Schroeder-Norton]
Actor Shannon Lee Jones will perform in the musical revue Some Enchanted Evening at the Show Palace Dinner Theatre in West Pasco. The show opens Friday and features a cast recruited mostly from New York.

HUDSON -- Hum the first six or seven notes of a Rodgers and Hammerstein song, and it's likely there's someone around who can take up the words and melody: I Whistle a Happy Tune (The King and I), You'll Never Walk Alone (Carousel), Climb Ev'ry Mountain (The Sound of Music) and, of course, Some Enchanted Evening (South Pacific).

The Show Palace Dinner Theatre will showcase many of these standards in the musical tribute Some Enchanted Evening, opening Friday for a six-week run.

"I want the (audience) to listen to these songs and hear them as if for the first time," said Casey Colgan, a New York-based director-choreographer in charge of the show. "The lyrics tell such a story that everyone can relate."

Colgan, who most recently wound up a tour with Mickey Rooney in The Wizard of Oz, recruited most of his 11-member cast in New York. It's an ensemble show, but Colgan says off-Broadway and national touring company singer-dancer Shannon Lee Jones is "sort of" the leading lady. She has played the title role in Mame in Hilton Head, S.C., and, earlier, Cassie in A Chorus Line in both the European tour and at Boston's North Shore Music Theatre.

Returning after a stint in the Show Palace's Smokey Joe's Cafe is Gregory Stockbridge. The rest are newcomers to both Florida and the Show Palace.

"This is mostly a singing show, but there's also dancing," Colgan said.

It's also a costume show: Colgan is dressing several of his female cast members in creations by designer Bob Mackie, winner of six Emmy Awards and three Oscar nominations for costume design and dresser for Cher, Carol Channing, Bernadette Peters, Diana Ross and Mitzi Gaynor.

Tom Hansen's set design is a two-tiered veranda with a central staircase flanked by two grand pianos being played by Show Palace music director Stan Collins and musician Gary Wyatt.

* * *

PREVIEW: Some Enchanted Evening runs Friday through Sept. 29 at the Show Palace Dinner Theatre, 16128 U.S. 19, Hudson. Shows are at 8 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays, 1:30 p.m. Sept. 14, 19, 21 and 28; and 3 p.m. Sundays. Doors open two hours earlier for buffet and cash bar. Dinner and show, $37.50, show only $26.45, plus tax and tip. Call (727) 863-7949 in West Pasco; toll-free elsewhere at 1-888-655-7469.

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