Review: Bring It On: The Musical | Dallas Summer Musicals | Music Hall at Fair Park

It Has Been Brought

As proven in the entertaining and new Bring It On: The Musical at Dallas Summer Musicals

published Thursday, February 16, 2012
1 comment

If you desire to put the newest teen musical into cultural and chronological perspective, try this sobering equation: The Truman High students of Bring It On: the Musical could very well be the progeny of the Rydell High Schoolers of Grease.

Yeah, really. Danny Zuko, Betty Rizzo, et al first rocked and rolled on Broadway back in 1971. Do the math.

The story focus is considerably narrower in Bring It On, currently kicking off the Dallas Summer Musicals' 2012 season. The new and highly entertaining show is set in the somewhat crazed subculture of competitive cheerleading. It's not enough just to cheer the Buccaneers to victory. The Truman squad means to be the best of the best, as determined by the tournament-like "cheer camp." En route to that goal, they train as hard as any athletes.

The routines devised by director/choreographer Andy Blankenbuehler are kinetic marvels, as lithe torsos explode into the air like human missiles. Movement is paramount here, so much so that the Playbill does not even bother listing the names of the songs by Tom Kitt, Lin-Manuel Miranda and Amanda Green.

Jeff Whitty's story line (comfortably different from the decade-old movie script) centers around Campbell, the gorgeous and savvy blonde captain of the Truman cheer squad until a redistricting moves her across town to Jackson High, which doesn't even have cheerleaders.

Taylor Louderman is a willowy wonder as Campbell, struggling and at times scheming to adjust to her new school and new schoolmates. Most of them are African-American. Campbell is white. Her partner in adjustment is Bridget (Ryann Redmond), a chubby nerdette who is accustomed to being outside of the in crowd.

Of course, Bridget soon learns to walk the walk, talk the talk and sing the song, to loud approval from the student body and the Music Hall audience.

Elle McLemore accomplishes a nifty acting stretch as Eva, the huggably vulnerable  newcomer to the Truman squad. Ah, but there's more to Little Eva, as McLemore reveals in the flashy number, "Killer Instinct."

Campbell, meanwhile finds her niche at Jackson High, after paying her dues by agreeing to cavort in a leprechaun costume (a marvelous sequence). Later, to seal the acceptance, Louderman joins Adrienne Warren (as the queen bee of the Jackson "crew") for a sisterly duet.

The guys don't carry much weight here. Exceptions include Neil Haskell and Jason Gotay as the males in Campbell's life, and NIcolas Womack as the Jackson High hottie who hooks up with Bridget.

Kate Rockwell is a delight as bitchy Skylar, for whom cheerleading is like a religion. Ditto Gregory Haney as the transgender "coed" known as La Cienega.

Rockwell provides a delicious moment when her character learns that Campbell's new school has no cheerleading squad.

"No cheerleaders?" she wonders, astonished. "What's the purpose of having a school if you don't have cheerleaders?"

That would be like Grease without the lightning, which is something Bring It On has in droves. Thanks For Reading


Patricia writes:
Monday, February 20 at 7:09PM

"Bring It On" was actually much more enjoyable than I thought it was going to be. The lead actors had great voices. Choreography was great. Cheerleading routines took me back to .... Story line was as expected, but so what - that's what it was supposed to be. All-in-all - go see it. Even my husband enjoyed it.

Dates, Prices, & Other Details

View the Article Slideshow

Comment on this Article

Share this article on Social Media
Click or Swipe to close
It Has Been Brought
As proven in the entertaining and new Bring It On: The Musical at Dallas Summer Musicals
by Perry Stewart

Share this article on Facebook
Tweet this article
Share this article on Google+
Share this article via email
Click or Swipe to close
Click or Swipe to close
views on theater, dance, classical music, opera and comedy performances
news & notes
reports from the local performing arts scene
features & interviews
who and what are moving and shaking in the performing arts scene
season announcements
keep up with the arts groups' upcoming seasons
listen to interviews with people in the local performing arts scene
media reviews
reviews and stories on performing arts-related film, TV, recordings and books
arts organizations
learn more about the local producing and presenting arts groups
performance venues
learn more about the theaters and spaces where the arts happen
keep up with fabulous ticket giveaways and other promotions
connect to local arts crowdfunding campaigns
post or view auditions and performing arts-related classes, services, jobs and more
about us
info on TheaterJones, our staff, what we do and how to contact us
Click or Swipe to close
First Name:
Last Name:
Date of Birth:
ZIP Code:
Your Email Address:
Click or Swipe to close
Join TheaterJones Around the Web

Follow Us on Twitter

Subscribe to our Youtube Channel

Click or Swipe to close
Search the TheaterJones Archives
Use any or all of the options below to search through all of reviews, interviews, features and special sections. If you are looking for a an event, use the calendar section of this website. This search will not search through the calendar.
Article Title Search:

Description Search:
TheaterJones Contributor:

TheaterJones Section:

Showing on or after:      Showing on or before:  
Click or Swipe to close
We welcome your comments

I am discussing:  

Your Name:
Your Email Adress:

please enter the text below and then click or tap SUBMIT :