By Greg Simay
Justin Love is a hoot and a half. It’s a gay romp (in the old as well as modern sense) and straight up entertainment. No matter which team you’re batting for, you’ll admire the game that Justin Love puts together: a media-savvy set, upbeat music, snappy choreography, sidesplitting characters and lead actors who wear the play’s serious message lightly on their matinee idol shoulders.
Movie heartthrob Justin Rush (ADAM HUSS) has the fat bank account, has the slender wife (Amanda, played by CARRIE ST. LOUIS) and has a summer action blockbuster about to premiere. Justin’s fans are all a-twitter and TMZ has him smoking in their media magnifying glass.
Justin’s gay. Amanda’s restless. And no one’s the wiser…yet.
Then love comes and bangs on the closet door. Justin falls for Midwestern boy Chris Andrews (TYLER LEDON), the star-struck assistant of Justin’s publicist Buck (ALET TAYLOR), who nearly steals the show with her uproarious portrayal of a Hollywood spinmeister. Amanda falls for old high school sweetheart Mitch Matthews (CIARAN MC CARTHY), now a tabloid hustler who shoots reputations with his camera.
Other show-stealing thieves include Chris’ roommates Donovan (TERRANCE SPENCER) and Syd (GRANT JORDAN), who convey the charming frivolity of lives uncaptured by life-changing love. But ADAM and TYLER pull off the most demanding roles: a romance that is credible and compelling without being too heavy for Justin Love’s playful tone.
Will TMZ find out the terrible truth about Justin? “Honey it’s Hollywood. You hear it before it happens.” Yes, this just in… Will love triumph anyway? Hey! It’s a romantic comedy.
Kudos to the creative team of MICHAEL MATTHEWS (Director), JANET ROSTON (Choroeography), GREGORY NABOURS (Musical Direction), LORI SCARLETT (Music and Lyrics), PATRICIA COTTER (Co-Book) and DAVID ELZER (Co-Book, Co-Story, producer). They’ve created a court jester of a play, telling truth to Hollywood royalty and their fawning fans. (For a further discussion of gay movie stars coming out, see companion article “Coming Out of the Glass Closet”.)
Continues at the Celebration Theatre through Sunday, November 18. Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays at 8:00 p.m.; Sundays at 2;00 p.m. Located at 7051B Santa Monica Blvd. Tickets are $34.99. Call (323) 957-1884 or visit www.celebrationtheatre.com.