Wednesday, May 04, 2011

"MOCK Your World" Rocks the World

Full disclosure: my brother and I grew up surrounded by music. Mahalia Jackson, Beethoven, Peter Paul & Mary, the Beatles, Aretha Franklin, Mozart, Gilbert & Sullivan, Crystal Gayle, Rogers & Hammerstein, Bob Dylan, Bach, and more.

While we eventually found our own favorite artists - The Game, Melody Gardot, Rusted Root, Teddy Pendergrass, Victor Wooten, Guns 'N' Roses, Robin Thicke, and so many more - there's something about musical theatre that always makes me feel rooted in history and sublimely entertained.

Andrew Byrne's "MOCK Your World" combines like no other stagecraft the magic of musical theatre, the passion for lyrics being as strong as belief in the notes being sung, and laugh your ass off humor. Each time I've seen "MOCK Your World" I wish that Comedy Central would create a spot for a show that I would produce entitled "TOYN" aka "The Ones You Need," starring a variety of people (the cast changes every quarter) including Rachel Maddow, Cory Booker, Louis C.K., Quincy Jones, and the only person who would appear in every episode is Andrew Byrne. This program would follow "The Daily Show"  and "The Colbert Report."

Full disclosure, Part II: Andrew Byrne is my voice teacher and coach. And it takes a real talent to help me go from operatic singing to the soulful twang of R&B. Andrew's skills go well beyond the studio as he is an accomplished composer, a strong pianist, a truly skilled vocalist, and one of Backstage Magazine's Favorite Vocal Coaches in New York City. You can learn more about what he does and how he works at his website.

Now to "MOCK Your World," which is in production this spring beginning on 16 May through the 21st (full details are below this post). "MOCK Your World" Spring 2011 Performances  Andrew has composed several songs and lyricized some classics - when you think of The Pirates of Penzance's classic "I am the Very Model of a Modern Major General," you'll never hear it the same way (or with such a smile) once you've experienced one of the songs where Lisa Rothauser is the lead vocalist. 

Among the other extremely talented actor-singers are Marya Grandy, Bart Shatto, and Robby Sharpe, and this trio brings to life the sometimes unpleasant experience on public transit (specifically the L train). Their timing, facial expressions, and gestures are evidence of people who know what they're doing and can do it in unexpected ways.

So many things are addressed - and satirized - onstage at "MOCK Your World:" comedy, politics, summer stock theatre, auditions, relationships, family. And Andrew and the crew bring to life key elements of movies such as "The Devil Wears Prada" and "Brokeback Mountain with joy, panache, and clever comedy that's just enough wink wink, nudge nudge.

Whatever you're looking forward to over the next couple of weeks, be sure to set aside time and get tickets for "MOCK Your World."

"MOCK Your World" - May 16 (7pm), May 19 (7pm), May 21 (6pm)
Rockwood Music Hall
196 Allen Street, between Houston and Stanton
Starring Andrew Byrne, Lisa Rothauser, Marya Grandy, Bart Shatto, and Robby Sharpe
Complimentary admission, two drink minimum
Doors open half hour before curtain
Make reservations via

Discover theatre and music done brilliantly and unexpectedly. Recognize and support the great people appearing at venues other than the Broadway stages.

No comments: