By Jim Schutze
By Rachel Watts
By Lauren Drewes Daniels
By Anna Merlan
By Lee Escobedo
By Eric Nicholson
Joan gets a job creating surreal hats worn by condemned prisoners on the way to the firing squad. She meets and marries another hat maker (Joey Oglesby) and by the end seems to have joined some sort of resistance movement.
Resistance to what, we never learn. But in this stark, delicately acted production, which incorporates several short original films by the Theatre Quorum company, we get the impression that whatever the troubles are, they're not far away at all.
Another among the current trend of plotless musical 'stravaganzas built around some pop genre, Movin' Out pounds out song after song by the Piano Man (played on opening night by Wade Preston, who looks like the Joel of the worn-out, one-wreck-too-many persona).
Out front, dancers choreographed by Twyla Tharp throw themselves into tizzies all over the stage without benefit of cadence or unison. Tharp, a dance idol of the 1970s, has fallen into predictable patterns of seemingly random steps. As if deaf to the beat, dancers slither, shrug, run, walk, swoop, flick-kick, droop, stumble and grind like kids fighting the symptoms of St. Vitus' Dance. Every number ends with somebody shaking booty and leaping offstage.
By intermission we'd had enough and did some movin' out ourselves, shrugging, swooping, stumbling, slithering and leaping for the door.