Bronco Billy - The Musical

Critics

LemonMeter

92 %

Reviews: 18

Audience

LemonMeter

Reviews: 0

"A fun Bronco Billy … tugs at the heartstrings with its notions about dreamers intent on making their lives — and, possibly, the world — a little bit better” LA Times

The country's going crazy; partisan politics, civil rights threatened, technology exploding. That's right, it's 1979! Somewhere in America's heartland, with more heart than sense, Bronco Billy struggles to keep his traveling Wild West show alive. But when Billy and his ragtag troupe of misfits meet Antoinette, a Manhattan heiress on-the-run, the ride gets even wilder as she turns Billy's world upside down. 

“Splendid music, singing and dancing. Recommended - Top Ten” - Stage Raw

Dennis Hackin (Book) wrote the novel and the film version of Bronco Billy, co-produced with Neal Dobrofsky. The story was created in homage to his parents who wanted to be cowboys and moved their city slicker family from Chicago to Arizona to live out their dreams.

Director Hunter Bird, in discussing what drew him to the show, said “Bronco Billy is so much about identity. Rather than accepting the roles we're given, we always have the ability to create our own realities, our own families, and our own identities.” 

Directed by Hunter Bird, Musical Director is Anthony Lucca (Mutt House at the Kirk Douglas Theatre, Cult of Loveat IAMA), choreographer is Janet Roston (The Boy From Oz - Ovation Award & LADCC Award; The Color Purple - Ovation Award) with Arrangments/Orchestration by David O (Soft Power– Ahmanson Theatre, 13, and Wild Party– Mark Taper Forum).

Chip Rosenbloom (Music & Lyrics), John Torres (Music & Lyrics), Michele Brourman (Additional Lyrics).

Cast: Eric B. Anthony* (BroadwayThe Lion King, Mary Poppins, Hairspray; Awards - Ovation, NAACP Theatre, Broadway World Awards, Recorded in Hollywood – Kirk Douglas Theatre) stars as Bronco Billy, with Amanda Leigh Jerry* (Kirk Douglas Theatre's Mutt House, South Coast Rep's Once, Musical Theatre West's Carousel, and Mary Poppins) starring as Antoinette, part of a fourteen member cast which includes Michelle Azar, Benai Boyd, Marc Cardiff, Randy Charleville, Fatima El-Bashir, Kyle Frattini, Bella Hicks, Chris M. Kauffmann, Anthony Marciona, Jamie Mills, Pat Towne, and Michael Uribes.

“Bronco Billy – The Musical” now extended through July 21st: Performances at 8:30pm Fridays and Saturdays, 2:00pm Saturdays and Sundays. No 2:00pm matinee on July 6 & 20. Added: 8:00pm performances on Thursdays July 11 & 18. Skylight Theatre is located at 1816 1/2 N. Vermont Ave, LA, 90027. Tickets start at $29. Children under 6 years old are not admitted. Information and reservations: (213) 761-7061 or (866) 811-4111. Online ticketing: http://SkylightTix.org

Reviews

Avatar
"I can’t single any one performance out because they are all so brilliant. Don’t find an excuse not to see this amazing show! Don’t dawdle either, the show is only on until July 21st. After that I can only presume they will be Broadway bound! Love, love, loved it!!!"

sweet - Samantha Simmonds-Ronceros - NoHo Arts District - ...read full review


Avatar
"The musical comedy stirs up a frenzy of silliness along the trail while permitting a pause here and there for the inevitable love stories of the Native American couple and, of course, Bronco Billy and Lilly/Antoinette. The show aims to tickle the funny bone of big kids and little ones alike."

sweet - Bill Reese - Table to Stage - ...read full review


Avatar
"Director Hunter Bird and a cast of 14 keep the tone playfully artificial, but the material, cotton-candyish as it is, manages to tug at the heartstrings with its notions about dreamers intent on making their lives — and, possibly, the world — a little bit better."

sweet - Daryl H. Miller - LA Times - ...read full review


Avatar
"The songs crossed a number of styles, were clever and fun, and really brought the story to life with a burst of resolve and enthusiasm. The direction (Hunter Bird), choreography (Janet Roston), and music and lyrics (Chip Rosenbloom, John Torres and Michele Brourman) were all deftly handled and brought the package together, leaving the audience in a smiling, feel-good mood as we left the theater."

sweet - Carol Edger Germain - Colorado Boulevard - ...read full review


Avatar
"For a brand new, good-time, offbeat musical to come swinging out of the gate with a great story and this much charm is a shocker. That it has moments of tenderness and hilarity is a plus. That it has a large cast with talent on steroids is infectious. That we leave with a smile — given the show’s issues — is a miracle. But this is one of those outings with so much heart and such sterling production values — the set, the band, the sound, the choreography — that it keeps us from concentrating on the project’s deficiencies: the confusing context; the uneven tone; and the non-character-defining, inconsequential, pedestrian songs that wear thin."

sweet-sour - Tony Frankel - Stage and Cinema - ...read full review


Avatar
"A magnificent plunge into musical theatre with a cast of talented performers who do not disappoint. Call your friends and bring them into town to experience this delectable delight...currently rocking the Skylight stage."

sweet - Michael Sheehan - On Stage Los Angeles - ...read full review


Ellen Dostal
"Perhaps the most impressive element of this world premiere however is Janet Roston’s personality-driven choreography. Her skill in choreographing to character is astonishing, and she can do it in any style on any size stage for any level of artist and make them shine. Whether she’s using a simple two-step to build a budding romance or creating a whopper of a production number to highlight every asset – and rodeo trick – the talented cast has in their back pocket, she succeeds in furthering the story through movement. It’s hard to describe but, in essence, it creates a physical arc to the show that transports you to a different place from where you started."

sweet - Ellen Dostal - ...read full review


David MacDowell Blue
"But more--and more than the good songs, the consistently fine performances, the clever staging, the general paraphernalia of the musical--it is how the hint we all belong here, we are all misfits looking for a home, for family, for love that gives this show its power."

sweet - David MacDowell Blue - Night Tinted Glasses - ...read full review


Rob Stevens
"A lot of money has been put into the production of this World Premiere... You just wish more funds had been spent on the book and the score to make Bronco Billy The Musical get closer to the bullseye it seems so desperate to hit."

sour - Rob Stevens - Haines His Way - ...read full review


Avatar
"I found the music and lyrics to be strong. There were a lot of great upbeat numbers that made me long for a cast album. The opening number “Ride With Us” really sets the tone, as do numbers like “Our Time Is Now”, or “It’s Gonna Be Great”, or “Whopper of a Song”. But the ballads are very nice as well. But I just know what I like to listen to; I can’t judge whether those who obsess about rhyme or composition would be happy. I just enjoyed it and found myself humming the tunes as I left (which is rare). A testament to this show, and how much I liked the music, was that I just went and bought tickets to see it again. Directly from the theatre (albeit with a discount code). I’m squeezing it in during the Fringe Festival. That’s how much I enjoyed the book and the music of this show."

sweet - Daniel Faigin - Observations Along the Road - ...read full review


Leo Buck
"Under his letter-perfect and agile direction, Bird and his cast and crew have concocted a big, bright, bubbly Valentine to hope-against-hope and the good old-fashioned value of having a dream. They’ve also successfully reminded us that going to the theater can be more kicks than a Hootenanny with a 100 proof ‘Still’ out back! (One thing is certain: “Bonanza” and “Gunsmoke” were never this entertaining–nor as downright fun!)"

sweet - Leo Buck - Bucking Trends - ...read full review


Avatar
"Artfully directed by Hunter Bird, BRONCO BILLY offers a bright, upbeat, and song-filled evening with a multi-talented cast. Kudos to musical director Anthony Lucca and choreographer Janet Roston, who keep the high octane musical up and running without a dull moment. John Iacovelli’s scenic design is brilliantly fluid for the small Skylight stage. Ann Closs Farley’s vivid costumes, Brian Gale’s lighting, and Cricket S. Myers’ sound cleverly advance the tale, while Matt Franta’s fight choreography almost blurs the line between aggression and dance."

sweet - Elaine Mura - LA Splash - ...read full review


Avatar
"Director Hunter Bird doesn’t play any of this in realistic fashion, opting instead for a slightly cartoonish, over-the-top style of performance. He also pushes the action hard, going for short, swift scenes (and songs). Thanks to its compliant and high-spirited 14-person cast, and to the snappy choreography of Janet Roston, Bronco Billy took flight at the Skylight and sped by in rousing, rollicking fashion. "

sweet - Willard Manus - Total Theater - ...read full review


Avatar
"If you haven’t seen the 1980 movie Bronco Billy with Clint Eastwood and Sondra Locke (or can’t remember if you did), don’t worry. With a book by Dennis Hackin (who also wrote the novel and the movie’s screenplay), and music and lyrics by Chip Rosenbloom and John Torres, with additional lyrics by Michele Brourman, this world premiere musical version, smartly directed by Hunter Bird, is a heck of a lot funnier and way more enjoyable. - RECOMMENDED"

sweet - Lovell Estell III - Stage Raw - ...read full review


Avatar
"I can easily envision this show being produced in New York and at regional theatres across the country, and, eventually, picked up by colleges and community theatres. Personally, I had a great time at the theatre on opening night."

sweet - Paul Myrvold - Theatre Notes - ...read full review


Avatar
"Well, the musical mounted at the Skylight Theatre does indeed have a motion picture pedigree and tie-in - but to a completely different Bronco Billy: the 1980 movie of the same name, starring and directed by Clint Eastwood. However, for once, my recurring error of not completing reading releases paid off, because even if the silent cinema’s first great Western hero isn’t part of the play, Bronco Billy, The Musical is indeed, good fun and worth seeing, especially by aficionados of musical comedies."

sweet - Ed Rampell - Free Press - ...read full review


Shari Barrett
"I cannot offer enough superlative-laden adjectives to describe the brilliance of the cast, beginning with Eric B. Anthony as Bronco Billy, who channels one of the most famous African American cowboys, Nathan "Deadwood Dick" Lane, with his effervescent personality making me believe he could easily be one of the great, rodeo-winning cowboy's descendants! His partnership onstage with Amanda Leigh Jerry as Antoinette/Miss Lilly, is beautifully realistic and dreamlike at the same time as they tear up the stage singing catchy tunes while executing athletic choreography to perfection."

sweet - Shari Barrett - Broadway World - ...read full review


Steven Stanley
"An heiress on the run finds an unexpected hideout and a unique new family of friends while being pursued by a gang of comic villains who can’t manage to shoot straight in the infectiously crowd-pleasing World Premiere musical Bronco Billy, quite possibly the most tuneful and entertaining L.A.-cast Broadway hopeful since Sister Act made its Pasadena Playhouse debut back in 2006."

sweet - Steven Stanley - StageSceneLA - ...read full review


Avatar
"I can’t single any one performance out because they are all so brilliant. Don’t find an excuse not to see this amazing show! Don’t dawdle either, the show is only on until July 21st. After that I can only presume they will be Broadway bound! Love, love, loved it!!!"

sweet - Samantha Simmonds-Ronceros - NoHo Arts District - ...read full review


Avatar
"The musical comedy stirs up a frenzy of silliness along the trail while permitting a pause here and there for the inevitable love stories of the Native American couple and, of course, Bronco Billy and Lilly/Antoinette. The show aims to tickle the funny bone of big kids and little ones alike."

sweet - Bill Reese - Table to Stage - ...read full review


Avatar
"Director Hunter Bird and a cast of 14 keep the tone playfully artificial, but the material, cotton-candyish as it is, manages to tug at the heartstrings with its notions about dreamers intent on making their lives — and, possibly, the world — a little bit better."

sweet - Daryl H. Miller - LA Times - ...read full review


Avatar
"The songs crossed a number of styles, were clever and fun, and really brought the story to life with a burst of resolve and enthusiasm. The direction (Hunter Bird), choreography (Janet Roston), and music and lyrics (Chip Rosenbloom, John Torres and Michele Brourman) were all deftly handled and brought the package together, leaving the audience in a smiling, feel-good mood as we left the theater."

sweet - Carol Edger Germain - Colorado Boulevard - ...read full review


Avatar
"For a brand new, good-time, offbeat musical to come swinging out of the gate with a great story and this much charm is a shocker. That it has moments of tenderness and hilarity is a plus. That it has a large cast with talent on steroids is infectious. That we leave with a smile — given the show’s issues — is a miracle. But this is one of those outings with so much heart and such sterling production values — the set, the band, the sound, the choreography — that it keeps us from concentrating on the project’s deficiencies: the confusing context; the uneven tone; and the non-character-defining, inconsequential, pedestrian songs that wear thin."

sweet-sour - Tony Frankel - Stage and Cinema - ...read full review


Avatar
"A magnificent plunge into musical theatre with a cast of talented performers who do not disappoint. Call your friends and bring them into town to experience this delectable delight...currently rocking the Skylight stage."

sweet - Michael Sheehan - On Stage Los Angeles - ...read full review


Ellen Dostal
"Perhaps the most impressive element of this world premiere however is Janet Roston’s personality-driven choreography. Her skill in choreographing to character is astonishing, and she can do it in any style on any size stage for any level of artist and make them shine. Whether she’s using a simple two-step to build a budding romance or creating a whopper of a production number to highlight every asset – and rodeo trick – the talented cast has in their back pocket, she succeeds in furthering the story through movement. It’s hard to describe but, in essence, it creates a physical arc to the show that transports you to a different place from where you started."

sweet - Ellen Dostal - ...read full review


David MacDowell Blue
"But more--and more than the good songs, the consistently fine performances, the clever staging, the general paraphernalia of the musical--it is how the hint we all belong here, we are all misfits looking for a home, for family, for love that gives this show its power."

sweet - David MacDowell Blue - Night Tinted Glasses - ...read full review


Rob Stevens
"A lot of money has been put into the production of this World Premiere... You just wish more funds had been spent on the book and the score to make Bronco Billy The Musical get closer to the bullseye it seems so desperate to hit."

sour - Rob Stevens - Haines His Way - ...read full review


Avatar
"I found the music and lyrics to be strong. There were a lot of great upbeat numbers that made me long for a cast album. The opening number “Ride With Us” really sets the tone, as do numbers like “Our Time Is Now”, or “It’s Gonna Be Great”, or “Whopper of a Song”. But the ballads are very nice as well. But I just know what I like to listen to; I can’t judge whether those who obsess about rhyme or composition would be happy. I just enjoyed it and found myself humming the tunes as I left (which is rare). A testament to this show, and how much I liked the music, was that I just went and bought tickets to see it again. Directly from the theatre (albeit with a discount code). I’m squeezing it in during the Fringe Festival. That’s how much I enjoyed the book and the music of this show."

sweet - Daniel Faigin - Observations Along the Road - ...read full review


Leo Buck
"Under his letter-perfect and agile direction, Bird and his cast and crew have concocted a big, bright, bubbly Valentine to hope-against-hope and the good old-fashioned value of having a dream. They’ve also successfully reminded us that going to the theater can be more kicks than a Hootenanny with a 100 proof ‘Still’ out back! (One thing is certain: “Bonanza” and “Gunsmoke” were never this entertaining–nor as downright fun!)"

sweet - Leo Buck - Bucking Trends - ...read full review


Avatar
"Artfully directed by Hunter Bird, BRONCO BILLY offers a bright, upbeat, and song-filled evening with a multi-talented cast. Kudos to musical director Anthony Lucca and choreographer Janet Roston, who keep the high octane musical up and running without a dull moment. John Iacovelli’s scenic design is brilliantly fluid for the small Skylight stage. Ann Closs Farley’s vivid costumes, Brian Gale’s lighting, and Cricket S. Myers’ sound cleverly advance the tale, while Matt Franta’s fight choreography almost blurs the line between aggression and dance."

sweet - Elaine Mura - LA Splash - ...read full review


Avatar
"Director Hunter Bird doesn’t play any of this in realistic fashion, opting instead for a slightly cartoonish, over-the-top style of performance. He also pushes the action hard, going for short, swift scenes (and songs). Thanks to its compliant and high-spirited 14-person cast, and to the snappy choreography of Janet Roston, Bronco Billy took flight at the Skylight and sped by in rousing, rollicking fashion. "

sweet - Willard Manus - Total Theater - ...read full review


Avatar
"If you haven’t seen the 1980 movie Bronco Billy with Clint Eastwood and Sondra Locke (or can’t remember if you did), don’t worry. With a book by Dennis Hackin (who also wrote the novel and the movie’s screenplay), and music and lyrics by Chip Rosenbloom and John Torres, with additional lyrics by Michele Brourman, this world premiere musical version, smartly directed by Hunter Bird, is a heck of a lot funnier and way more enjoyable. - RECOMMENDED"

sweet - Lovell Estell III - Stage Raw - ...read full review


Avatar
"I can easily envision this show being produced in New York and at regional theatres across the country, and, eventually, picked up by colleges and community theatres. Personally, I had a great time at the theatre on opening night."

sweet - Paul Myrvold - Theatre Notes - ...read full review


Avatar
"Well, the musical mounted at the Skylight Theatre does indeed have a motion picture pedigree and tie-in - but to a completely different Bronco Billy: the 1980 movie of the same name, starring and directed by Clint Eastwood. However, for once, my recurring error of not completing reading releases paid off, because even if the silent cinema’s first great Western hero isn’t part of the play, Bronco Billy, The Musical is indeed, good fun and worth seeing, especially by aficionados of musical comedies."

sweet - Ed Rampell - Free Press - ...read full review


Shari Barrett
"I cannot offer enough superlative-laden adjectives to describe the brilliance of the cast, beginning with Eric B. Anthony as Bronco Billy, who channels one of the most famous African American cowboys, Nathan "Deadwood Dick" Lane, with his effervescent personality making me believe he could easily be one of the great, rodeo-winning cowboy's descendants! His partnership onstage with Amanda Leigh Jerry as Antoinette/Miss Lilly, is beautifully realistic and dreamlike at the same time as they tear up the stage singing catchy tunes while executing athletic choreography to perfection."

sweet - Shari Barrett - Broadway World - ...read full review


Steven Stanley
"An heiress on the run finds an unexpected hideout and a unique new family of friends while being pursued by a gang of comic villains who can’t manage to shoot straight in the infectiously crowd-pleasing World Premiere musical Bronco Billy, quite possibly the most tuneful and entertaining L.A.-cast Broadway hopeful since Sister Act made its Pasadena Playhouse debut back in 2006."

sweet - Steven Stanley - StageSceneLA - ...read full review