“Damn Yankees” hits a grand slam home run

Steve Finley

Every once in while you will attend a movie or play that slaps you in the face with enjoyment and keeps you on the edge of your seat from beginning to end. The musical play “Damn Yankees” is one of those performances that you will want to go back and see a second time.

If you are a baseball fan or just a person that likes good entertainment Damn Yankees is a must see event. The musical comedy blends great acting with superb singing and terrific dancing that will have you singing to yourself and tapping your feet.

The show opened last Saturday and continues this weekend at the Redondo  Beach Performing Arts Center, which is located on 1935 E. Manhattan Beach Blvd. in the City of Redondo Beach.  Show dates and times are Friday at 8 p.m., Saturday at 2 p.m. and 8 p.m. and Sunday at 2 p.m.  Tickets prices range from $35 to $65.

The producer of the play is 3-D Theatricals and the script is taken directly from the 1950s’ play on Broadway in New York and the 1955 movie starring Tab Hunter as Joe. In the current musical Robert Hoyt plays the older Joe Boyd who is persuaded by the Devil, played by Jordan Lamqureux to sale his sole to win baseball games.

“I have been doing theatre for about 17 years,” said Hoyt after the opening night show. “The reason I auditioned for this part is because I always loved the show and the movie.  They took a chance on me and I am glad it worked out.”

Like most actors, singers and dancers, being on stage is in their blood.

“My mother was a music teacher so I started singing at a young age,” said Hoyt. “The audience tonight was amazing. They took the show to the next level.  What the audience gave us we gave it right back.”

The younger Joe was played by Cameron Bond but the two characters that made everyone laugh and cheer were Lamqureux and Alexis Carra who played Lola.  “I started acting when I was nine,” said the 27-year-old Lamqureux.  “I followed my brother and sister into acting.  I want to continue to act and create my own plays and always contribute to the arts.”

Carra, who graduated from Yale University is no stranger to big time productions.  She played roles on Broadway and has choreographed commercials for the Discovery Channel and Fox.

“I started dancing when I was two years old,” Carra said.  “I went to school for theatre so I have been doing this my whole life.  I have been doing a lot of television with ABC but one of my dream roles is to play Roxie in the play Chicago.”

All of the singers, dancers and actors did a great job along with the orchestra that never missed a beat.