They Say It’s Wonderful
Written by Andrea Taylor
The title of this single performance show put on by the Bailey Dolls is taken from the Irving Berling song – sung beautifully in the show – and the ‘it’ referred to is falling in love. The title is well chosen, not only as it fits with the narrative created for the show but because the show itself is wonderful. It might be a cornball thing to say but it is true nonetheless.
Rita, Edie and Betty – Merrilyn Greer, Leah Potter and Tahlia Ries – entertained the crowd with a selection of Andrews Sisters tunes (plus some) in their beautiful three-part close harmony that does the memory of the Andrews Sisters more than justice.
Not only was I entranced by their harmonies but the women all exude charm in the characters they have created. The subtle differences in their costumes perfectly captured the differences between their characters as well.
The first number - Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy – was a teensy wobbly in parts but by the end I could tell they were at ease. They had blown me away. Highlights included Near You, possibly one of the loveliest songs ever written, and Stephen Sondheim’s You Could Drive a Person Crazy from Company. The latter brought a bit of extra cheekiness though was by no means the only source in the show.
The girls made the most of the intimate performance space at La Boheme (one of my favourite venues). They switched a LED sign on and off to signal “onstage” or “backstage”. The band provided tight accompaniment, smoothly interpreting many of the big band songs for a three-piece.
When you can love your favourite songs sung by someone else, you know that something fantastic must be happening, just as I did at They Say It’s Wonderful.