October 10, 2015
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Blues Brothers rock at Park
Don Fowler

The Blues Brothers tribute show rocked Cranston’s Park Theatre Monday night with a Vegas-type show that had the small crowd on its feet, singing, dancing and giving a huge ovation to the energy-packed performance.

The only thing missing was a big audience.

The renovated theatre is a perfect place to watch a show of just about any kind. Over 600 people saw a Cambodian dance troupe put on a terrific show last week, and upcoming performances by Cape Briton fiddler Natalie MacMaster and a country band featuring Kevin Costner should fill the over 1,000 seats later this month.

The people at the Park theatre are working hard to promote the great shows they have lined up, but they need the support of the folks from Cranston, Warwick and beyond to make it work.

The Blues Brothers show had played to sold-out audiences in London’s West End theatre district, Chicago, and other big cities, yet failed to bring out enough Rhode Islanders to fill even half the seats.

And what a show it was!

It looked and sounded like you were watching Dan Aykroyd and John Belushi go through their wild choreography, backed by a powerhouse trio and first class band. Their repertoire ranged from country to gospel to rock to pop and, of course, blues.

The lights, costumes, staging and sound were as good as it gets. A version of “Under the Boardwalk” was the best I had ever heard. They did everything from “Flip, Flop, Fly” to “Respect” to the closing “Soul Man” and “Jailhouse Rock.” And you didn’t have to pay Vegas prices.

This is a call to all arts lovers. Check out the terrific upcoming shows and bring your friends and family to the Park. It is the perfect place to watch a show.

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