Monday, April 1

Theater Review: Beef and Boards Menopause the Musical

Menopause the Musical opens at Beef and Boards Dinner Theatre this week to the sound of an audience
gone wild. Who knew menopausal-age women (and their menfolk, by the way) could be so energetic and exuberant?

I do now.

Lest you believe only the Red Hat Society ladies like this show, the audience was young, old, male and female.

Four women "meet" each other while fighting over a black brassiere in a sale bin at Bloomingdale's, NYC. Four women from four different lifestyles find they all have one thing in common ~ menopause. Hot flashes, night sweats, crankiness, crying jags, sex drive and vibrators all get discussed ~ and sung about ~ in the 90-minute show, which has no intermission, by the way.

Lamenting, laughing and listening to each other about the symptoms transferring them to their golden years bring on songs from the 1960s, '70s and '80s. Lyrics befitting the problems associated with aging explain away their pains, desires and frustrations. "Chain of Fools," Lion Sleeps Tonight," "Puff the Magic Dragon," Good vibrations," "What's Love  Got to do With It?" and "I Got You Babe" are just a few of the two dozen songs revamped for the cause. Short of stamping their feet, the theater-goers gave their stamp of approval to the well known and loved show. And, who could blame them?

Tiffanie Bridges, a veteran of Menopause graces the northside stage with all the freshness of her first performance as Professional Woman in the worldwide phenomena known to middle-age women as true, accurate and hilarious. Chances are if you saw Menopause at the Athenaeum a few years back, it was Bridges who blew you away with her vocals.
Bridges has appeared in the show in more than 40 cities over the past eight years. Also known throughout the Indy area, the powerhouse of vocal talent brings the audience to cheers and tears. With an arch of her eyebrow the soulful singer wins arguments with the other three ladies ~ with a song or two she wins over the audience's admiration. This lady is quickly becoming one of my Designation Singers in town.

Joining Bridges in the quarrelsome foursome is Judy Bridgewater, absolutely delightful portraying Iowa Housewife. Bridgewater brings a naivete required for the role, while still able to sass it up when necessary. Dee Etta Rowe hums along in her role as Earth Mother, giving the holistic approach for aging.

Rebecca Fisher, as Soap Star, debuts at B&B, which is surprising as she rocks the diva role, portraying the shallow, vain television actress with a devilish charm. If this is her first performance at B&B, let us pray it isn't her last.

*Special note: Adult-themed subject throughout the performance makes this an adults-only program.

Bottom Line: Women and men will enjoy ~ equally ~ the hilarious Menopause the Musical at Beef and Boards due to the creative lyrics and fabulous talent.

For tickets, performance times and group discounts, visit www.BeefandBoards.com.
Images: www.JulieCurryPhotography.com

Elizabeth J. Musgrave is a syndicated fine-living, travel columnist, freelance writer and photographer, and performing arts and restaurant critic for www.GottaGo.us. Read Infused, her spirits, wine & beer lifestyle column, at www.GottaGo.us and www.FoodDigital.com, and catch her as Indy’s Entertainment Adviser on 93 WIBC. Gotta Go is published on www.Gottago.us, www.BroadwayWorld.com, and in print. Follow her on Twitter @GottaGo, LinkedIn and Facebook.



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