St. Louis Stage Capsules

Dennis Brown and Paul Friswold suss out the local theater scene

Tell Me Somethin' Good Not to get all sappy on you, but if your heart is broken, Tell Me Somethin' Good can fix it. And if your heart ain't broke, Tell Me Somethin' Good is going to ding it up a little bit, then put it back good as new. Conceived and directed by Ron Himes, this musical revue is constructed as a he-said-she-said walk through the history of black pop music, which is to say it's a walk through the past 40 years of American music. Neither sex gets the last word on love, but the ladies may win on points — one listen to Sarah Stephens' rich, dark voice powering through Curtis Mayfield's "Mama Didn't Lie," and you'll do anything she asks. In the interest of fairness, the ladies sitting one row down seemed similarly entranced by Brian Owen's arguments in "Sixty Minute Man." The entire ensemble is excellent, and the band, under the direction of Charles Creath, is outstanding: The rhythm section of Jimmy Hinds (bass) and Molden K. Pickett III (drums) is a force of nature. Rock solid. Presented by the Black Rep through February 8 at the Grandel Theatre, 3610 Grandel Square. Tickets are $30.50 to $43 ($5 discount for students and seniors; $10 rush seats available for students 30 minutes before showtime). Call 314-534-3810 or visit www.theblackrep.org. (PF)

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