Old Town Alexandria rocked out to Zemfira Stage’s performance of Forever Plaid, Plaid Tidings last night and the roof nearly shook with laughter and applause. The Special Holiday Edition had children as young as three tapping their feet and with references as varied as Glee, corded phones and Ella Fitzgerald, there was was something for all ages to laugh about.
The stage is set by Meganne McCawley Johnson (Angel) as she explains the origins of Forever Plaid and invites the audience to suspend their disbelief in honor of the Holiday season. Johnson’s lyrical voice gently lured us into the world of Forver Plaid and her periodic appearances were a refreshing break from the deluge of wonderful songs.
The confused quartet of Frankie, Sparky, Smudge and Jinx had no idea why they’re were here, but boy were we lucky that they couldn’t help but serenade us for the entire evening! The music touched all genres and decades and proved that a Holiday Show doesn’t have to be exclusively sober or feature only Christmas music.
Brian Johnson (Frankie) couldn’t help put big a big smile on your face with his charming voice and over the top optimism. The tallest of the group, he easily took the reigns to help his excitable team of goofballs through their unknown mission. Charlie Manship (Sparky) is the definition of smooth. His silky voice had the audience wrapped around his finger and even his silliest joke received a rousing laugh.
Jim Mitchell (Smudge) boasted the deepest voice of the evening, which comically complemented his lovable teddy bear and fraidy cat demeanor throughout the show. Joe Philipoon (Jinx) was the most lovable fool of the evening. From his unexpected physical humor to phenominal solo, Philipoon really knew how to work his role.
Director Zina T. Bleck put together a musical comedy show like no other and created something very special with the help of her cast and crew. Musicians Joe Drzemiecki (Bass) and pianist Jonathan Blank masterfully towed the show through countless styles of music without a hitch.
The Plaid Holiday Tidings is a ‘Must See’ for anyone wanting two hours of laughter and great music. A perfect evening out with friends or family.
Running time is 2 hours, with a 15 minute intermission.
Forever Plaid: Plaid Tidings ends its run today at The Lyceum – 201 South Washington Street, Alexandria, VA. Tickets can be purchased online, or by calling (703) 318-0619.