Crazy For You: Stellar CCU performance

Coastal Carolina students are receiving many praises for their roles in Coastal’s latest performance, “Crazy For You” which wrapped up at the end of February.  

The musical was directed by Adam Pelty, an associate professor in the theatre department, and the one thing I can say about the production is it was absolutely breathtaking.  

“Crazy For You” is a romantic comedy Broadway musical from 1992 with songs composed by George and Ira Gershwin, and the story written by Ken Ludwig. While there is a story being told, the main draw of the show is how it showcases some of Gershwin’s most beloved songs, with the story being there to tie them all together. 

I wasn’t too familiar with the show beforehand, but I was still impressed with how it was put together. This isn’t the first time Gershwin’s musical comedy showed its face at Coastal, it was first performed in 2007. I can’t speak on past productions, but if they were as good as this one, then I’m intrigued to look more into future shows by the department. 

The story begins in the 1930s and follows Bobby Child, the son of a snooty bank owner, who dreams of nothing more than to be a stage performer. Despite his wishes, he is sent to a desolate town in Nebraska to foreclose on a theater struggling to make ends meet. He ends up falling in love with the theater owner’s daughter, Polly Baker, and he impersonates a prestigious theater owner; hilarity ensues from there.  

It’s basic but it works for tying together musical numbers. Speaking of which, those were the highlights of the show.  

I’m not familiar with the original Broadway production, so I’m unsure if there were any liberties taken with Coastal’s production. Regardless, the choreography was a joy to watch, with numbers ranging from stunningly complex to charmingly simple. The music itself also had a decent amount of variety.  

 Everyone from the leading actors to the background performers were so lively and charismatic. Bobby Child, played by Jeff Gallup, stole the show with a wonderfully animated performance befitting of such an overdramatic character.  

Polly Baker, played by Kenley Belle Juback, was a lot of fun as well with a great singing voice to boot. And of course, there’s Bela Zangler, played by Jervon Monroe. While his appearances were more scattered throughout the show, he was great fun whenever he showed up, accompanied with an exaggerated Eastern European accent.  

Easily one of my favorite numbers had him and Bobby mirroring each other in a drunken stupor with excellent comedic timing from both.  

One thing that took me by surprise was the set design. I don’t have much experience with musicals, but I found the different uses of shifting perspective to be eye-catching, along with scenes seamlessly transitioning between one another. Most of my experience with musicals keeps things standard in terms of positioning, but some great set design helped keep things visually interesting.  

It was an excellent production all around and I look forward to what the department has in store for the future.