BEWARE:  "ZOMBIES FROM THE BEYOND" ARE INVADING NORWICH

BONNIE GOLDBERG

The city of Milwaukee has been invaded, but there is no need to panic. It happened decades ago, in 1955, and only in the mind of the playwright, James Valcq, who created "Zombies from the Beyond." And don't let the term Zombie cause dread or fear. These are definitely not members of the undead, creatures who have died and come back to life, to haunt the unsuspecting.

Valcq's play, that opened Off-Broadway in 1995, pays homage to the Eisenhower era with tongue-in-cheek satire. Its campy style is meant to entertain as it pokes fun at sci-fi  horror flicks.  The Spirit of Broadway Theater in Norwich is having rockets of riotous fun as it launches "Zombies from the Beyond" for your viewing pleasure until Sunday, April 6.

At the Milwaukee Space Center, everyone is agog. The principals in command are Major Malone (Steve Sabol) and his aide Rick Jones (Randy Ronco), with the able assistance of Charlene (Rori Nogee), their secretary, who is fixated on finding a male and mate. Also tap dancing in and out are the Major's majorly competent daughter Mary (Lauren Nocole Adams) and the cheerful and helpful deli delivery boy Billy (Paul Leitz). They are all eagerly awaiting the arrival of the noted rocket scientist Trenton Corbett (Michael Wesells).

Corbett's appearance is soon overshadowed by the sight of a UFO, a flying saucer, posed to land on the infinitely ironic Galaxy of Coiffures Beauty Salon across the street from the space station. An Amazon-like she-creature Zombina (Nicole Lowenstein) quickly invades the Control Room, using her siren soprano voice to lure all males in the vicinity to obey her commands. Zombina needs males to re-populate her planet and serve as slaves she calls "Zombettes."

The scientific silliness escalates, enhanced by tunes like "Rocket Roll," "Atomic Feet, "The Second Planet on the Right," "In the Stars" and "Deadline: Milwaukee." Zombina is clearly a Devious, Devilish Diva and she must be defeated by the women on earth, until the Wicked Witch of Outer Space is dead. Brett Bernardini directs this energetic cast in this cotton candy coated spoof with happy hands.

For tickets ($32.50), call Spirit of Broadway Theater, 24 Chestnut Street, Norwich at 860-886-2378 or online at www.sbt@99main.com. Performances are Wednesday and Thursday at 7 p.m., Friday and Saturday at 8 p.m. and Sunday at 2 p.m.

Mark your calendars now for the 15th Annual On The Town Wine Tasting and Auction on Saturday, April 19 at 6:30 p.m., beginning with wine tasting, a silent auction and hors d'oeuvres, an 8:30 p.m. live auction and ending with a cabaret show from 9:30 to 10 p.m.  Tickets are $50 for one and $90 for two. The Wine Tasting is sponsored by Towne Liquor Store, Norwich.

Blast off into outer space for a musical journey to the beyond you will long remember as you count down from 10-9-8 to FUN. Keep your oxygen masks ready.

 

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