There comes a time when you realize you can’t please everyone. When you learn that people need to accept you for who you are. That is just one of the messages in La Cage Aux Folles playing now at Bloomington Civic Theatre. In fact “We Are What We Are”, a song about accepting who you are and not apologizing for it opens the show and sets the tone for this romantic comedy musical.
La Cage Aux Folles tells the story of Georges, owner of the La Cage a drag queen nightclub on the French Rivera, his partner and the star of his nightclub Albin and his son Jean-Michel. Naturally, Jean-Michel has proposed marriage to Anne, a young girl who hails from an ultra-conservative family. In fact, her father Monsieur Dindon is running for office on the platform of eradicating behaviors that don’t jive with this strict code of morality.
Richard Hamson, the resident Costume Designer at Chanhassen Dinner Theatres trades his day job to portray Albin, the star drag queen at the La Cage. It is a good thing Hamson decided to moonlight in this production, because he steals the show. Many times I found myself thinking I was watching Tony Winner Nathan Lane (Lane portrayed Albin in the 1996 movie version “The Birdcage”). Hamson brings raw emotions to every scene he is in, especially the scene in which he learns Jean-Michael doesn’t want him to be there to meet his fiancé’s parents.
Joe Chvala directs and choreographs this fantastic show. Chvala’s choreography is top notch. All of the dance numbers are superb, but the show-stopping number belongs to the Cagelles for “La Cage Aux Folles”. Ed Gleeman’s costumes are spectacular. Especially when it comes to the Cagelles. Their costumes are vibrant, splashy and a colorful delight.
If you’re looking for a show that will dazzle and captivate from the first note to the final bow, La Cage Aux Folles at Bloomington Civic Theatre is the show for you. The production is all around fantastic and is visually and aurally stunning.
For tickets or more information visit their website. La Cage Aux Folles runs through February 15.