Rent at The Ivoryton Playhouse
Rent, on its 20th anniversary, has stood the test of time. It’s as relevant and fresh today as it was at its Broadway debut in 1996. Loosely based on Puccini’s La Boheme, this story of a group of young, starving artists living in the East Village tells the harsh realities of the era of AIDS, through the eyes of a tight knit bunch of friends, most of whom are HIV positive. Facing a nightmarish future, they still manage to find love, hope and moments of happiness. The Ivoryton has gathered an exceptional cast for this show…standouts vocally are Maureen (Stephanie Genito, perfectly cast), Mimi (Alyssa Gomez) and Tom Collins (Patrick Clanton), but the entire company delivers an exuberant performance. My husband had to shush me, as it was impossible NOT to sing along to the familiar score. We saw the show on the second night, and were awed by the polish of the young performers. It will only get better. This is an important work, lest we ever forget those harrowing days. If you haven’t seen Rent, or even if you have, go see it at the Ivoryton through August 28.