Passover Musical Heads for L.A.'s Century City

News   Passover Musical Heads for L.A.'s Century City
 
When Mendel Moskowitz's sarcastic attitude toward Passover is overheard by God, he's cast back into ancient Egypt as a Hebrew slave. In Jeremiah and Wendy Ginsburg's musical comedy, Mendel And Moses, Brooklyn boychik Mendel ends up a comedic sidekick and right-hand-man to Moses, with both using diplomatic strategy to get the Jews out of tzuris -- and out of Mizrayim. The press release for Los Angeles' Century City Playhouse promises, "the Exodus was never funnier!"

When Mendel Moskowitz's sarcastic attitude toward Passover is overheard by God, he's cast back into ancient Egypt as a Hebrew slave. In Jeremiah and Wendy Ginsburg's musical comedy, Mendel And Moses, Brooklyn boychik Mendel ends up a comedic sidekick and right-hand-man to Moses, with both using diplomatic strategy to get the Jews out of tzuris -- and out of Mizrayim. The press release for Los Angeles' Century City Playhouse promises, "the Exodus was never funnier!"

Oddly enough, Ginsberg's musical doesn't open until after Passover -- May 3 -- but like The Ten Commandments, the show seemingly has a cast of thousands, with 18 performers playing more than 50 characters. Tunes run "from Hebraic ballads to Broadway-style showstoppers," with musical direction by Darrin Degenhardt and choreography by Tanya Everett-Bagot and Wally Bagot.

Starring in the show are Jesse Garn @ses, Ciro Barbaro as Mendel, Elkin Antoniou, Cassie Byram, Mary Chen, Spencer Cherashore, Dan Collins, Tomas Guajardo, Brad Heller, Chris Harper-Johnston< Carol Hurley, Margaret Hurley, Karen Kataline, Danny Otero, Kerima Reed, Leah Stanko, Daniel Tirman, and Ned York. (By the way, according to publicist Michael Patrick, Garnee is part native-American, part French Canadian; Barbaro is Italian by way of the Bronx -- neither is Jewish.)

Designing Mendel & Moses are Mark Henderson (set), Martyn Bookwalter (lighting), and Debbie Gluck (costumes).

Spokesperson Patrick told Playbill On-Line the authors plan to take the show to the 500-seat Equity house, the Canon Theatre in Beverly Hills (where Bermuda Avenue Triangle lanuched after its run at the Tiffany). A New York run is not out of the question "if reviews and reception" go well. Songs in the show include, "Mendel & Moses" (sung by Moses and Mendel), "The Land Of Milk And Honey" (sung by the Hebrew slaves), "Frogs," "Onions And Garlic," and the more Hebraic-themed ballads, "Hear O Israel," "For Zion's Sake." For tickets ($20-$22) and information on Mendel & Moses at Century City Playhouse in West Los Angeles, running April 26-June 15, call (888) 566-8499.

--By David Lefkowitz

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