Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Upstaged on Broadway

Exhibit A: Oliver Platt
Film/TV credits include:
  • Frost/Nixon

  • "The West Wing"

  • The Ice Harvest

  • Kinsey

  • Dr. Doolittle

  • Bulworth

  • A Time to Kill

Exhibit B: Craig Bierko
Film/TV credits include:

  • "Unhitched" <-- did you miss this one? I caught an episode centering around a girl's retch-worthy "skin flap." Honestly, how did that not last?

  • Superhero Movie

  • "Boston Legal"

  • Scary Movie 4

  • Dickie Roberts: Former Child Star (with the man-child only Heather Locklear could love, David Spade)

  • "Sex & the City" - that guy that loved jazz music and played Carrie like a bass cello

Somehow, these two guys ended up in Guys & Dolls together on Broadway. Seriously, small world! Playbill.com and all the other theatre websites don't actually mention Bierko at all - when I first walked into the Nederlander on 41st and saw his name, I thought Craig Bierko was the guy from the "Hercules" series (tsk, you can't take Hercules away from Kevin Sorbo! It's all he has!). Top billing goes to Oliver Platt - whom I truly love as the intelligent, self-deprecating sidekick character actor - and Lauren Graham, best known as the mom from "Gilmore Girls."

When Oliver Platt first stepped on stage as Nathan Detroit, the crowd was given time to applaud his famosity...famousness...and we took advantage of the opportunity. The same went for Lauren Graham as Adelaide. Applause all around! Except...when Craig Bierko made his entrance as Sky Masterson, there was ample time for a round of recognition applause. Instead, everyone kind of sat uncomfortably, wondering if any one else in the audience was thinking of clapping. Yeouch.

It's a crazy thing to say, given all the evidence piled against him, but Craig Bierko kicked Oliver Platt's Broadway bottom. Platt barely even phoned it in - for example, the choreography was composed around him since he's not quite what you would call "nimble." But Bierko....man, Bierko was on fire. In fact, he was pretty durn hot. Clad in a white suit and matching hat, he salsa danced in the Cafe Havana scene, pretty much sweeping Sister Sarah the Missionary and the audience off their feet. He was a true show-stealer!

Thankfully, he got the ovation he deserved at the curtain call. Since I went to Guys & Dolls specifically to see Oliver Platt, I was a bit disappointed in the show overall. As a person who was literally dragged to see Scary Movie 4 and spent the time checking my watch, it's hard to believe I'm saying this, but: Thank heavens Craig Bierko was there to save the night!

1 comment:

Adam said...

You didn't include Oliver Platt's credit as Dennis Cahill in "Executive Decision". The man whose major "tell" was his intense chewing on a plastic stirrer straw and who eventually saved the day with said straw. -AMR