With music and lyrics, including old and new songs, by Jimmy Buffett, "Escape To Margaritaville" definitely is a must for his fans. For those of us not familiar with his music, yes, I admit it, like me, the show is fun, an escape from what is going on in the world outside of the theatre. While the book by Greg Garcia & Mike O'Malley does try to get a bit serious just wait for the next song and/or corny joke or scenes with Shelly Lyn Walsh as Tammy and Peter Michael Jordon as Brick with, or without, each other. Their joy on stage comes across the footlights straight to the audience.
The leads, Chris Clark as Tully and Sarah Hinrichsen as Rachel handle their water and oil mix pleasantly and both have good voices while Patrick Cogan as J.D. the old man and Rachel Lyn Fobbs as the hotel owner offer a sweet and funny sort of romance.
There were a few show stopping moments such as Clark and Jordon singing an insightful "He Went To Paris" or Jordon doing a cliched version of the Rockettes tap dancing that will have you clapping and smiling as you shake your head at something you have seen in more shows than you can count. Matthew James Sherrod, as Jamal, has the strongest voice and shows it off in the opening of the second act with "Volcano".
By the way, talking about show stopping moments, I don't know if it will happen at the end of every performance but Jimmy Buffett came out and, with the cast and the audience helping, finished the show singing "Margaritaville" as beach balls were thrown out into the auditorium.
"Escape To Margaritaville" made me want to see Jimmy Buffett in concert. Am I on my way to becoming a *Parrothead?
"Escape To Margaritaville" runs 2 hours and 20 minutes including a 20 minute intermission.
*A Parrothead is a fan of Jimmy Buffett (there is no other meaning). The typical parrothead is pictured to wear. a Hawaiian shirt, flip-flops, and other tropical attire, and to enjoy drinking margaritas on the beach. Parrotheads often decorate their homes in tropical motifs.