The Canyon Theatre Guild presents Singin’ in the Rain, a toe-tapping musical reflecting the pivotal time in film history when sound film was first introduced to the American public. As early as 1923, screenings of a new-patented sound-on-film technology were retroactively fitted to silent films and became immediately popular. The major studios all scrambled to procure and adapt the technology for making big studio films with sound incorporated.
The silent film actors were plagued by multiple issues with the advent of the talkie. Although they knew what was coming, by the end of the ‘20s, many of these silent stars were questioning what it was to be an artist when it became impossible to practice that art. Stars with heavy foreign accents and heavy colloquial American accents did not transition smoothly to talkies. Clara Bow once quipped, “Now they’re having me sing, so I sort of half-sing, half-talk, with hips-and-eye stuff. I used to sing at home and people would say, ‘Pipe down! You’re terrible!’ But the studio thinks my voice is great.” Most actors made the transition as best they could, and many did quite well for themselves. Others, however, just couldn’t make the switch gracefully – and this is where the comic concept behind Singin’ in the Rain was born.
The 1952’s movie musical classic, Singin’ in the Rain presents a whimsical vision of the chaotic transition to talking pictures. The show is set in Hollywood in the late 1920s, when the Jazz Singer created a worldwide sensation. The fictional studio, Monumental Pictures realizes they must convert their stages to accommodate sound. Each unforgettable scene, song and dance from the movie is accounted for, including the show-stopping title number and an onstage rainstorm! Hilarious situations, snappy dialogue, and a hit-parade score of Hollywood standards make Singin’ in the Rain the perfect entertainment for any fan of the golden age of movie musicals.
Performances run May 24 to June 28 on Friday and Saturday evenings at 8 p.m.: May 24, 31, June 6, 7, 13, 14, 20, 21, 27, 28, Saturday and Sunday matinees at 2 p.m.: May 25, June 1, 8, 14, 15, 21, 22, 28. Tickets: Juniors/seniors $15 to $17; Adults $17 to $19.
Call the Canyon Theatre Guild Box Office at 661-799-2702 for information and reservations.