If you grew up in the 70s, 80s or 90s, you probably remember the "Schoolhouse Rock" cartoons and can sing along with "Conjunction Junction," "Three is a Magic Number" and "I'm Just a Bill." I loved "Schoolhouse Rock" as a kid and still think it's the best way for anyone to learn grammar and times tables. I bought the DVD for my children, who swear it saved them during many a test in elementary school.
So I was intrigued to hear about Salt Lake Community College's production of Schoolhouse Rock, Live! currently playing at the college's Grand Theatre at the former South High. I wondered if a live stage show could capture the fun of the original cartoons.
I was pleasantly surprised. The show's young, energetic, appealing and talented cast: Dustin Bolt, Sean J. Carter, Linton Dean, Kelsie Jepsen, Rossana Jasmin Moreno and Shannon Musgrave, bring a sense of fun to what are already terrific songs. The show is a straighforward presentation of 21 selected "Schoolhouse Rock" numbers, strung together with a simple narrative about a new teacher nervous before his first day. There's no subversive subtext here, and no adult-oriented jokes.
I enjoyed the cast's singing and dancing thoroughly, and hearing the songs definitely took me back to my childhood. I wished the production team had used more over-the-top props and costumes to recreate some of the zaniness of the original cartoons. The show is obviously aimed at kids and runs only an hour and an half.
Bottom line: If you're a "Schoolhouse Rock" fan and you bring school-aged children, you'll enjoy the live production. If not, you might be bored.
Oct. 10-24, 7:30 p.m
Saturday matinees 2 p.m.
1575 South State St.
Call the box office for discount offers