Christmas in Connecticut – Review by Bonnie Goldberg

In 1943 an ambitious gal from Iowa lands in New York City with the dream of becoming the spokesperson for Tomorrow’s Woman. After months of false starts, Elizabeth Sandor takes a job writing a column under the name Liz Lane that starts her on a road that just begins her journey. Go to Goodspeed Musicals on the Connecticut River in East Haddam to follow this plucky lass navigate her way to success and satisfy her ambitions. Don’t hesitate because her travel plans will expire on Friday, December 30.

Audrey Cardwell’s Liz is a no-nonsense, self sufficient and focused female who is ready to take her philosophy on the road, straight into your heart. In this play with book by Patrick Pacheco and Erik Forrest Jackson, with music by Jason Howland and lyrics by Amanda Yesnowitz, we get to revisit the film that starred Barbara Stanwyck so many decades ago. It hasn’t lost its sparkling personality and festive frivolity.

Liz holds her own against the males who rule the publishing roost, until she is asked to host a war hero (Josh Breckenridge) at a Connecticut farmhouse, with Victor Beecham (Matt Bogart) set up to pose as her husband, thanks to Liz’s associate and Victor’s brother Dudley (Raymond J. Lee). Can Liz convince people like her boss Mr. Yardley (Melvin Tunstall III) that she is the consummate housekeeper when she is clearly not really married, or a mother, or a gourmet cook? The complications abound, making the official fact finder Gladys (Rashidra Scott) quite suspicious, especially as she sings “Something’s Fishy.” It’s only with the help of Felix (James Judy) and Norah (Tina Stafford) that Liz has any hope of pulling off the scheme.

Other catchy tunes include “Recipe for Success,” “A Capital Idea,” “The World of Liz Lane” and “Christmas in Connecticut.“ Amy Anders Corcoran directs this holiday confection with sweetness and spice.

For tickets ($30-81), call Goodspeed Musicals, 6 Main Street, East Haddam at 860-873-8664 or online at Performances are Wednesday and Thursday at 2 p.m. and 7:30 p.m., Friday at 8 p.m., Saturday at 3 p.m. and 8 p.m. and Sunday at 2 p.m. and 6:30 p.m. Masks are recommended but not required.

Come let Liz Lane, who is a big fan of Eleanor Roosevelt, pull out all the holiday stops in her charming efforts to play Tomorrow’s Woman today.