Swingin’ Set

 

For Quality Hill Playhouse’s cabaret revue Still Swingin’, syncopated ladies and gentlemen evoke a time when people got “Misty” over one another, weren’t embarrassed to proclaim “I’ve Got the World on a String” and found the innuendo within “Hit Me With a Hot Note and Watch Me Bounce” much sexier than whipped cream. Though the world was at war, the horizon was full of Technicolor possibilities — as well as soldiers and girls with seamed nylons cutting a rug to the Andrews Sisters and Duke Ellington.

Three of the four Jerry’s Girls from Quality Hill’s hot show last fall — Alison Sneegas Borberg, Karen Errington and Nancy Nail — are comfortably joined in this effort by newcomer Dustin Cates. And though solos don’t dominate like in past Quality Hill shows (there are fewer than half a dozen), the arrangements generously accommodate the vocalists for a host of duets and four-part harmonies. J. Kent Barnhart at the piano, Ken Remmert on drums and Steve Lenhert on bass infuse the room with rhythmic amiability for the cast’s perkier numbers and a satiny sheen for such torch songs as “As Time Goes By” and “That Old Black Magic.”

Whether they were caused by the frigid weather outside or the sniffley kind of cold that can insinuate its way through a theater company in record time, however, there were moments when the notes slipped out of reach for each singer. But the group was mostly vibrant, delivering a couple of jaunty polkas and a more assertive “Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy” than Company B could ever have imagined along with a trip down “Route 66” that percolated with the caffeine buzz off a “Java Jive.”

Barnhart’s spoken interludes — about bad service and a tacky private party in Mission Hills for which he was the master of ceremonies (where the decrepit piano was “grand” only in the hostess’ mind) — were snappy and a tad politically incorrect.

Categories: A&E, Stage