By Michael Jacobs / firstname.lastname@example.org
George Fox just can’t leave the glory days behind him.
Ten years after he was first drawn into directing community theater at the Marcus Jewish Community Center with a production of “Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat” and a year after staging his first revue at the JCC with “Glory Days,” Fox is back again with longtime production partner Sandy Ferko with another revue, “More Glory Days.”
Like the first “Glory Days,” Fox has compiled and scripted this revue from popular songs of the 1950s, 1960s, 1970s and 1980s and put together a cast of community members 50 and older, some of whom he worked with decades ago at Congregation Etz Chaim, Temple Emanu-El, Ahavath Achim Synagogue, and Emory University, where Fox founded Ad Hoc Productions.
Fox said he wasn’t planning to do a second “Glory Days.” But the first show was a big success, “so we decided we’d do it once more.”
About 50 people, including a cast of 24 and an orchestra of nine, are involved in “More Glory Days.” Using cast questionnaires, Fox put together a script and selected the 26 songs for the show.
Themes connect the sets of songs. For example, Fox said, a baseball sequence in this year’s show moves from John Fogarty’s “Centerfield” to “Damn Yankees,” and last year “Big Man in Town” gave way to “If I Were a Rich Man.”
“We’re looking for stuff the audience is not expecting but will ring bells in their heads,” Fox said.
Surprise is an important element in the show, he said. The printed program doesn’t list the song order, so the audience doesn’t know what’s coming next.
Because it’s community theater, some in the audience might be expecting a glorified talent show, but Fox said the shows blow away those low expectations. “You don’t have to be Actors Equity to be good onstage.”
Enhanced use of the video system in the theater should add to the quality and enjoyment of this year’s show, Fox said.
He said the “Glory Days” approach makes both the cast and the audience happy. The shows are child-friendly and are just fun. “It’s a great escape. People in it have a great time.”
Because of the extensive work involved in creating a revue and the risk of audience boredom with the formula and because he doesn’t want to get to the point of doing “Glory Days Strikes Back,” Fox said his and Ferko’s Fifty Plus Productions likely will go back to book shows in the future.
But if the seven shows this month prove as successful as last year’s revue and the Marcus JCC and the community ask him back, Fox said, he’ll probably keep directing community theater at the center.
What: “More Glory Days” musical revue
Where: Marcus JCC, 5342 Tilly Mill Road, Dunwoody
When: March 19, 26 and 29 at 7:30 p.m.; March 21 and 28 at 9 p.m.; March 22 and 29 at 1:30 p.m.
Tickets: $17 for Marcus JCC members, $25 for nonmembers, and $12 for children and students; www.atlantajcc.org/boxoffice or 678-812-4002