Gary Cogill reviews 'Give It Up!'

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by GARY COGILL / WFAA-TV

wfaa.com

Posted on February 2, 2010 at 1:32 AM

Something magical is currently on stage at The Wyly Theatre in downtown Dallas: A world-class, world-premiere musical called "Give It Up!"

Produced by the Dallas Theater Center, it is based on Aristophanes' 2,400-year-old Greek comedy, "Lysistrata." But instead of ancient women withholding sex from soldiers to stop a war, you'll find cheerleaders withholding sex from basketball players to win a game.

The knock-out voices in "Give it Up!" are almost all Broadway veterans, including Patti Murin as the lead, Lysistrata Jones, and Andrew Rannels as Mick Jackson — they are terrific.

As the pop songs and the talented cast move the plot along, you start to realize this is deeper and richer material than it appears on the surface.

"Give It Up!" is directed and choreographed by Dan Knechtges with more energy than most teen musicals. It's also flat-out funny in its writing and concept.

Run to the theater to see "Give it Up!" — originally intended as a film, but now likely headed to Broadway.

And look for Dallas actress Liz Mikel as more than a goddess; she's perfect for the part, and bigger than life.

E-mail gcogill@wfaa.com

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