Saturday, January 14, 2017

End Up Here (review)

Spoilers ahoy!

Here it is--my first review of 2017. Something a tad offbeat--a musical performance titled after one of the best of several songs, End Up Here.

As some of you may or may not know Christopher Reiner has done quite a bit of original music for Zombie Joe's Underground Theatre Group in NoHo.  Here, for about an hour, he shares a variety of songs.  Music being as subject to taste as it is, let me be as clear as I can.

First, I liked this performance very much.  The music itself was very nice, nothing spectacular but good, and punctuated by a lyrics laden with dry wit.  Here, more than the nice tunes and good delivery (with a definite glitter in Reiner's eye) the songs well and truly shine.

Credit: Joe-Reiner
It is hard to describe precisely why I'm so enthusiastic about this--and hard to warn anyone who might not find it their cup of tea.  Yeah, I'm a fan of dry, preferably razor-sharp wit.  Especially when not aimed at someone who doesn't deserve it, but rather at the self.  There's the totally un-self-conscious manner Reiner has as a performer while doing his own songs.

Also, I liked his digressions into stories about life in general.  They aren't very many but make up a nice punctuation and/or cleansing of the palate.  More, they share the same quality as the lyrics.  Neither gives us answers, just stories--histories as it were from which we make what we can.  Some folks don't like that.  They prefer to be told explicit lessons.

But Reiner gives us something else.  Something I found quite enthralling in its own way.  I suppose the best, most visceral comment I can make is to note my reaction as the show came to its close.  It was only an hour, but as it ended I felt startled.  Surely that wasn't an hour?  Surely it was more like twenty five minutes?  Nope.  An hour.

I left wanting more.  If this sounds enticing, please hurry.  Only two performances remain as of this writing.

End Up Here plays Sundays at 4pm January 14 and 22, 2017 at ZJU 4850 Lankershim Blvd., (just north of Camarillo, just south of the NoHo Sign)  North Hollywood, CA 91601.

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