Royal Family Productions details the astounding true events of the life of Genya Ravan, a rock and roll pioneer that overcame astounding adversities. More…
Before Goldie and The Gingerbreads, the first successful all-female rock band in 1962, Genya Ravan was Genyusha Zelkovicz, a young girl fleeing Nazi-occupied Poland with her family in search of a hopeful start in America. After passing through Ellis Island and moving to the Lower East Side of New York City, Genyusha, now "Goldie," faced grief, poverty, abuse and loss of identity. With no one to turn to, she forged her own path, and changed history.
"'Rock and Roll Refugee' is a very gritty musical with an inspiring story...Ms. Renyan’s story is a truly sad, yet inspiring account of survival and triumph…As Genuysha, Ms. Dideriksen gives a very powerful, uninhibited performance…As the book writer and director, Chris Henry kept the action moving in a seamless way. The material never seemed to get bogged down by clichés…I truly hope 'Rock and Roll Refugee' will have another life after this limited run." Full Review
"'Rock And Roll Refugee' is filled with hard rocking numbers written by Ravan…With the show the heavy lifting in terms of the singing is left to the vocal prowess of Katrina Rose Dideriksen, a terrific belter…She is backed by an equally talented three-piece band…It is the music that matters most, along with Genya Ravan's strong and resilient personality that shines through no matter what obstacles block her path." Full Review
"Writer-director Chris Henry takes us through Goldie’s quest for autonomy…Music functions as thematic link and saving grace, with autobiographical songs and a spirited ensemble carrying us through the story’s progression…Simultaneously a classic underdog story and a strikingly specific tale of one woman’s rise to fame, 'Rock and Roll Refugee' traverses the liminal spaces of memory and identity, epitomizing art’s potential to bridge this gap and lead us to a brighter future." Full Review
"A invigorating coming-of-age bio-musical...It doesn’t have a breakout song, but it does have some powerhouse production numbers. Thanks to Dee Roscioli, who plays Goldie as she ages from childhood to the cusp of adulthood, it also has a heart-grabbing way of depicting an inborn passion…Bits of the book need clarifying, and pruning is in order, but there’s something exciting here." Full Review
"This musical thrives in music and lyrics but falls into the traps that similar musicals can't avoid…'Rock and Roll Refugee' has a lot going for it but when it comes down to it, the book is sadly holding it back. The elements are present but when it comes to storytelling, some polishing needs to happen otherwise it will join the ranks of the strong songbook, poor story jukebox musicals." Full Review
See it if you like Jewish immigrant stories, musicals, human happiness and suffering, fine performers, humor, depression and "off beat" techniques.
Don't see it if you dislike plays that engender, at times, depression, use a lot of profanity and present day language in a past historical period.
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