'Dreamgirls' Choreography Feels Like a Dream Come True
Last Friday night, I had one of the most magical nights I've had in a really long time. I had the extreme pleasure of attending the opening night of Dreamgirls at the Dallas Theater Center.
Let me start off by saying that Dreamgirls is one of my favorite musicals of all time. I've been dancing to the music of the show since I was ten, under the training of the late, great Steven Boyd. Even though I had no clue what I was dancing to since the musical debuted on Broadway the year I was born (1981 - you do the math), I've always felt a connection to that music and story.
I even drug my brother to the movies with me on Christmas day in 2006 to see the opening of its film adaptation. We waited in line for nearly an hour to witness the magic that is Dreamgirls.
Needless to say, last Friday night I was elated to be on the front row experiencing this story yet again.
And then it started...
I heard the music first. Then I saw performers in gorgeous costumes run onto the glamorous stage that extended far into the audience like a 'catwalk.' And then all I could see for the rest of the show was the choreography.
My first heart-pounding connection to the movement came during their performance of "Fake Your Way to the Top." From the intricate pathways, interesting transitions, undeniable connection to the music, and incredible soulfulness, the choreography in this number had me on the edge of my seat, trying my best not to jump onto the stage.
Aside from the rhythms the dancers executed, which complemented the music beautifully, the dancers also held trumpets throughout the entire performance. There was clarity, precision, did I mention soul? Soul for days honey!
After that point, I was full out in non-stop head bobbing, foot tapping, finger snapping, and singing along to just about every song.
While "Fake Your Way to the Top" was a surprise show stopper for me, I was expecting fabulousness for "Steppin' to the Bad Side." And fabulous it was, indeed.
That number was sophisticated yet...
I keep searching for a replacement for soulful, but I can't find anything else to describe it. It was the essence of soulful. Heartfelt, pure, and as rhythmic as is life.
One moment there was pulled up technique, then the very next there was pulsating jumps to the music that took you the church. Again, it took everything in me not to pull a Lil' Mama and crash their performance with a holy ghost dance.
I could potentially go through each number and list all the ways the choreography moved me. Rickey Tripp, the production's choreographer whose credits include Motown the Musical, In the Heights, Smash, and much more, is a massive talent in a stylish chocolate package.
I'm such a fan. I've been a fan since we met last August, and experiencing his work in Dreamgirls has definitely sealed the deal.
A critic for the Dallas Morning News said my choreography for Don't Bother Me, I Can't Cope was "alone worth the price of admission," and that's exactly how I feel about Rickey's choreography for Dreamgirls.
Do yourself favor, and catch the show before it closes. Experience the magic for yourself.
Click the button below to stay connected with more choreography reviews, interviews with #WorkingDancers, career resources, and more. Once you join the movement, you'll get access to an awesome library of FREE career goodies.