By Gordon Durich
Summer’s in the air. Donna Summer won the world over with her catchy disco tunes in the 1970s. “I Feel Love,” “On the Radio” (a personal favorite); “Bad Girls” and “No More Tears” (with Barbra Streisand) were just some of her hits.
“Summer: The Donna Summer Musical” about the undisputed queen of disco is about to hit the Fred Kavli Theatre at the Bank of America Performing Arts Center, May 12 to 15, in Thousand Oaks, staged by the American Theatre Guild. A Broadway sensation, this touring production features more than 20 classic hits woven into the score.
Donna Summer was one of the stars of the German production of the American Tribal rock musical “Hair” (another fave) and other musicals, and is immortalized by this exciting show.
We actually met Donna Summer at a reception at this venue, and she was far from a Diva. My friend built her studio in Malibu and concurred she was a genuine, generous and warm soul.
Featuring a book by Tony Award nominee Colman Domingo, Robert Cary, and Tony winner Des McAnuff and music and lyrics by Donna Summer, Giorgio Moroder, Pete Bellotte, Paul Jabara, and others, based on the life of Summer.
Based on original choreography by Tony Award winner Sergio Trujillo.
“Her songs broke every record, her story broke every barrier,” proclaims the publicity. Her talents and voice live on.
The musical closed on Broadway on December 30, 2018 after 289 performances.
The musical highlights Donna Summer at three stages of her life. Duckling Donna is in her pre-teens, starting out in Boston; Disco Donna, in her late teens and 20s, has her initial success; Diva Donna is in her 50s and at the top of her career.
“Dolly Parton presents ‘9 to 5’…What a Way to Make a Livin’,” (January 19-22) ; “Fiddler on the Roof,” (March 9-12); “’Anastasia’, the new Broadway Musical” (April 27-30) and “Cats” (May 11-14) are slated for the Broadway in Thousand Oaks series next year. Don’t miss them!