By Holli Harms
When someone we are rooting for gets their big break, finds it, or has it find them, we jump to our feet, arms in the air, unabashedly cheering. We again believe in dreams.
That’s what makes reality TV so compelling, and also what makes Original Sound, now playing at the Cherry Lane Theatre, so exciting. We are rooting every second along the way for Danny Solis (Sebastian Chacon). Danny’s talent finds the unexpected and unwanted proverbial backdoor entrance to the promise of fame and fortune. His work is plagiarized, stolen by a famous artist.
These days we have to be so careful of our words, our creativity, all of it online for everyone to see, to listen to, to experience and to easily steal. Copyrights are important but even there you will find “blurred lines” of what is the law and what is not.
In Original Sound, the mega-artist Ryan Reid (Jane Bruce) is alive and well, and owns up to her thievery, and even agrees to collaborate with this talented unknown. And much like a reality show, with lies, deceit, and music world trickery, we don’t know who to trust. Everyone is out for themselves. The proximity to fame and fortune takes a toll on decency and humanity. This is a story where fathers turn on their sons and daughters and people are used for personal gain because they can be.
Talent and creativity versus business and money. The business of talent. It’s Reality TV as we watch the contestants in their recording studio/big-brother house create new music. Who is on your side when fame and fortune are on the periphery and within reach?
The arguments on both sides are valid. The double-talk traffic jam goes round and round. It’s confusing, disorienting about who to believe. And then exploitation evolves utilizing the tools of lies and deceit. What does being “original” really mean anyway, and who really cares, when you are on top and everyone’s pockets are full? It’s all moths to the flame, and talent and creativity are the “flame.” Fairness, unfortunately, has no place at this table.
The original music composed by Daniel Ocanto is wonderful and sublime. There is a Susan Boyle moment on stage that is just as golden as Ms. Boyle’s. The audience surrounds the set on three sides so we get to experience all of us tapping our feet and swaying to the music.
The cast, across the board, spot on. Jane Bruce and Sebastian Chacon triple threats indeed – singers, musicians, actors. And Sebastian Chacon’s portrayal of the newcomer Danny Solis is so unbelievably affable, positive, and lovely, that he is the one we are rooting for, wanting for, he is the star about to be born.
ORIGINAL SOUND a cautionary tale of what happens when we justify our every move with motivated reasoning – adapting all reasoning of our actions to meet our needs. It is the play that resonates our time now in history.
Set Design by Justin Townsend, Costume Design by Sarita Fellows, Lighting Design by Kate McGee, Sound Design by Nathan Leigh, costume design by Sarita Fellows, sound design by Nathan Leigh, production stage manager Christine Lemme and general manager/producer is Julie Crosby.
Performances run through June 8, 2019, at Cherry Lane Theatre (38 Commerce St. in Manhattan). Tickets are $55 – $85 and are available by visiting CherryLaneTheatre.org, by calling 866-811-4111 or by visiting the Cherry Lane Theatre Box Office.
$55 for performances May 10 – June 8
$75 Premium tickets for performances April 30 – May 8
$85 Premium tickets for performances May 10 – June 8