How funny is Tony award winning author Ken Ludwig’s latest in a trilogy of broad comedies (the first two being Lend Me a Tenor and Moon Over Buffalo!)? A scheduled three week run in Helsinki ran for over seven months before it was decided to run the show indefinitely! Critics have said “Ludwig’s newest comedy is so funny it will make sophisticated and reasonable men and women of the 21st century cackle till their faces hurt.”
Leading Ladies is about two Shakespearean actors in the early 1950s who are so down on their luck that they’re playing “Scenes from Shakespeare” on the Moose-Lodge Circuit in the Amish country of Pennsylvania. When Leo (Michael Collins) and Jack (Jason Endicott) read about a rich old woman in York, PA (Marla Khayat) who is about to die and leave her fortune to her two long-lost nephews whom no one has seen since birth, they decide to high-tail it to York to impersonate the two men. It’s only when they’re a few minutes out of town that they discover that the nephews are in fact nieces, and that they must appear in York as “Maxine” and “Stephanie” if they’re to collect the loot.
While disguised as women, they fall for two local ladies (Bridget Pugliese and Hannah Lively) and the men’s transformation from men to women to men again is hilarious and slightly reminiscent of “Some Like it Hot.” Adding to the mayhem are Jeff Johnson as Duncan Wooley, Randy Aronson as the inept Doc Myers, and Brian Watts as Butch.
The cast, under the direction of Ingrid Boydston, will not only keep you laughing, but will keep you guessing as well.
Leading Ladies enters the second week of its run with performances every Friday and Saturday evening at 8:00 PM through April 25. There will be Sunday matinees at 1:00 PM on April 5 and April 12. Tickets are $10-$12 for Juniors and Seniors and $12-$15 for Adults. The Canyon Theatre Guild is located at 24242 San Fernando Rd., in Old Town Newhall