Reviewed by Paula Citron
9 to 5: The Musical
Music and lyrics by Dolly Parton
Book by Patricia Resnick
Directed and choreographed by Jeff Calhoun
Starring Dee Hoty, Mamie Parris, Diana DeGarmo, Kristine Zbornik and Joseph Mahowald
Toronto Centre for the Arts
Jun. 29 to Jul. 10, 2011
9 to 5: The Musical is a mildly enjoyable summer diversion.
The 2009 Broadway show sports toe-tapping songs by country music superstar Dolly Parton. The book is by Patricia Resnick who co-wrote the much-beloved 1980 cult movie.
The musical plot is very faithful to the film, as three working women take revenge on their, and I quote, “sexist, egotistical, lying, hypocritical, bigot” boss.
Director/choreographer Jeff Calhoun has made two cardinal errors. He has played for stereotypes and forced the comedy.
In fact, the whole plot, set before the age of political correctness, is treated like one big joke. To make the characters and their stories have resonance 30 years later, the material has to be treated as satire, and the hard edge is not there.
In summary, this musical is harmless fluff. The singing and dancing are routine, and nothing jumps off the stage to truly tickle one’s fancy.
9 to 5: The Musical runs at Toronto Centre for the Arts until Jul. 10.