All Shook Up - The Music of Elvis Presley

Laguna Beach, CA (The Hollywood Times) 7/12/16 – “We are starting the season here at the Laguna Playhouse rockin’ and rollin’ with the music of Elvis Presley in this Broadway musical All Shook Up.  It’s a great, fun and entertaining musical with over 20 Elvis Presley sounds,” Ann E. Wareham, Artistic Director for the Laguna Playhouse, told The Hollywood Times at their VIP opening night performance Sunday night.

The Hollywood Times had the honor to be invited to this special opening night with hors d’oeuvre of teriyaki chicken skewers, baby cherry tomatoes with mozzarella cheese skewers, and several other delicious and well-presented hors d’oeuvre.  Two types of complemented gin/lemonade beverages, with well drinks, wine and soda for purchase.  This all before the musical play.

It was a sold out gathering, as the bell chimed for the 5:30 p.m. performance.  My guest and I had the pleasure of front row seats and we were not disappointed, although all the seats in the theatre are great seats.

The Place: A small, you-never-heard-of-it town somewhere in the Midwest.

The Time: A twenty-four hour period during the summer of 1955.

The plot of the play is all about love, what else! So it’s where Shakespeare meets Elvis.  One girl’s dream and a surprise visit from a mysterious leather-jacketed, guitar-playing stranger help a small town to discover the magic of romance and the power of rock & roll in this all Elvis musical, loosely based on William Shakespeare’s play Twelfth Night.

It’s the perfect summertime musical.  Featured songs include hits like “All Shook Up,” “Heartbreak Hotel,” “Love Me Tender,” “Don’t Be Cruel,” and “Can’t Help Falling in Love.”

The stage was set, the curtain rose, there was a jail scene, a few metal chairs and “Jail House Rock” with one of the main character “Chad” (played by Clark Helman) sporting a black leather jacket, white T-shirt, jeans and most importantly blue suede shoes!  Clark does an excellent job throughout the play singing those Elvis tunes and some great dance moves.

Another main character named Natalie (played by Lily Ganser) had a dual role to play and Lily Ganser did it quite well.  You will have to go see the play to appreciate her talent and the talent of the entire cast of All Shook Up.

All Shook Up was inspired by and featuring the music of Elvis Presley and based on the book by Joe Di Pietro.  It is produced by Boebe Productions, LLL, directed by Steve Steiner and musical director Jeffrey Biering.