The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

Lisa Frankenstein was released to theaters Feb. 9th and was released to digital platforms Feb. 27.
"Lisa Frankenstein" Review
February 29, 2024
The program for SMU Lyric Theatres performance of Suor Angelica and Gianni Schicchi, Dallas Texas, Sunday February 18, 2024
Love, loss and laughter
February 27, 2024

Uptown Players tweak classic Broadway hits

At+Kalita+Humphrey%E2%80%99s+Theater%2C+Uptown+Players+perform+a+zany+version+of+Broadway+favorites.+The+performance+features+musical+classics+that+are+sure+to+satisfy+even+the+least+enthusiastic+of+Broadway+fans.
Photo Courtesy of Uptown Players/ Photo by Mike Morgan
At Kalita Humphrey’s Theater, Uptown Players perform a zany version of Broadway favorites. The performance features musical classics that are sure to satisfy even the least enthusiastic of Broadway fans.

At Kalita Humphrey’s Theater, Uptown Players perform a zany version of Broadway favorites. The performance features musical classics that are sure to satisfy even the least enthusiastic of Broadway fans. (Photo Courtesy of Uptown Players/ Photo by Mike Morgan)

Where can you watch two males sing “The Trolley Song” from the classic musical “Meet Me in St. Louis” to each other as well as watch Liza Minelli sing from “Dreamgirls” in just two hours?

“Broadway Our Way: A Decade of Divas with Uptown Players.” That’s where.

Hosted by Paul J. Williams and Marisa Diotalevi, the “Broadway Our Way” production is an annual fundraiser just closed this week at the Kalita Humphreys Theater in Uptown.

For this year, the production was directed by B.J. Cleveland and choreographed by John De Los Santo.

The production was also musically directed by Adam C. Wright and SMU music department’s very own Kevin Gunter.

The troupe of 27 singer-dancers performed 30 songs from Broadway hits such as “Book of Mormon,” “Catch Me if You Can,” “Xanadu,” “The Wedding Singer,” “Memphis,” “Shrek,” “Chicago,” “Fiddler on the Roof,” “Sweet Charity,” and “Spamalot.”

Truly a musical theater man’s dream, this show is arguably one of Uptown Players’ most anticipated and the most electric production of the year.

But here is the ringer; “Broadway Our Way” is a musical revue where the company’s men sing pieces intended for women and the company’s women sing songs intended for men.

This was Uptown Players’ tenth production of “Broadway Our Way.”

It was also the second production written and directed by Cleveland, who performed in Uptown Players’ first production, “When Pigs Fly,” which opened the weekend after 9/11.

This tenth anniversary performance certainly did not disappoint, as the audience guffawed at Cleveland’s rip-roaring humor throughout the production.

Some comedic highlights include the all-male diva ensemble doing “Hey Big Spender” from “Sweet Charity” and the all-female diva ensemble doing a “Turn It Off” from “The Book of Mormon,” performed at a meeting of Women of the Revitalized Mormon Sisterhood (W.O.R.M.S).

But for every riotous, entertaining series, there was a sensitive, poignant moment, such as Cleveland’s solo “I’m Still Here” from Follies.

The solo exposed not only the history of Uptown Players, but his personal history and career thus far as an actor and director.

Highlights of “Broadway Our Way” included Rick Starkweather’s heart-wrenching performance of “Honor of Your Name from “Civil War” and Kayla Carlyle’s strong rendition of “Flying Home” from “Songs for a New World.”

Carlyle truly brought the house down.

There certainly was never a dull moment and the off-the-wall drag was both a surprise and a kick.

The performance was unique, idiosyncratic and wacky.

By incorporating gender blending and role reversals with such well-known Broadway classics, “Broadway Our Way” had a striking influence on the audience.

The show’s inherent message of individuality, spirit and hope, started with lyrics such as “Let Your Freak Flag Fly” from “Shrek.”

The show’s inspiring lyrics made a 360 degree turn by the end of the show by concluding with the well-known “West Side Story lyrics” “There’s a place for us,” which spoke to a wide range of people.

This year’s “Broadway Our Way” starred 25 actors/singers from Uptown Players theater crew.

There were two special guest stars that switched off performing: Darius Robinson and Patty Breckenridge.

Additionally, the lobby was full of auction prizes such as theater tickets, restaurants gift certificates. A catered reception followed each performance.

Next up for Uptown Players is “Silence of the Clams” by Jamie Morris on April 27.

This summer, Uptown Players is also bringing to stage Mel Brooks and Thomas Meehan’s “The Producers” and “The Divine Sister” by Charles Busche.

The Kalita Humphreys Theater is a seven minute drive from campus, so be sure not to miss out what Uptown Players has to offer.  

More to Discover