Onstage: Dirty Rotten Scoundrels

No swindle here: a professional cast, a polished design, an 11-player orchestra, a hot show just a few seasons removed from Broadway, a reasonable ticket price — all in comfortably posh surroundings at Covington's Carnegie Center. For a musical about con

You have just one more weekend to catch this very funny musical based on a very funny film. I know this might not sound all that original, but Dirty Rotten Scoundrels was a 1988 movie with a cult following, and the musical transforms it into a downright hilarious piece of theater — good enough, in fact, to be nominated for nine Tony Awards in 2005. I had to be convinced that it would work on the small stage at Covington’s Carnegie Center, but director Alan Patrick Kenny brought a lot of creative energy to his production. It’s inventively staged, and the dance numbers choreographed by Patti James, who spend most of her time at UC’s College-Conservatory of Music, are especially fun. Kenny also assembled a cast of actors who are just right for their roles, especially Mark Hardy as the suave con artist, Charlie Clark as his buffoonish partner and rival, and Alaina Mills as the “Soap Queen of Cincinnati” who might be smarter than either of the swindlers vying for her attention and fortune. The whole evening turns out to be as entertaining as can be, but it’s only onstage for one more weekend. If you’re looking for some good laughs inspired by some really rotten scoundrels, you’ll find them at the Otto M. Budig Theatre through Sept. 20. 

Read Julie York Coppens' review here.

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