Michael Deeds: Get 'Wicked,' if just for Glinda

mdeeds@idahostatesman.comApril 20, 2014 

There's a star among the cast of "Wicked," playing at the Morrison Center through May 4. Her name is Kara Lindsay.

Someone must have tapped Lindsay's forehead with an actual magic wand, because it's hard to imagine anyone doing Glinda the Good Witch better.

Lindsay's role is a natural audience charmer. She gets to be ditzy, blond, snobby, kind, self-absorbed, inspirational and linguistically ridiculous - sometimes within a span of about 15 seconds.

The New York actress elevates above the stage in her bubble as the show begins, then elevates the part for 2 1/2 hours. There's her beautiful, rafter-skimming singing voice. Her endless array of hilariously haughty quirks. Her meticulously mangled cartwheeling. Her perfect hair tosses. Her proudly frozen beauty-queen smile.

If you're not particularly interested in "Wicked" (yeah, that was me), go just to see her perform.

Yes, you might find the show's vocal vibrato wars a little silly. And, yes, a few ballads drag on too long. But even from a cynical rock-critic-guy perspective, I can't deny that "Wicked" is pretty dang fun. Bottom line: Even without the aid of her witch gal pal's flying broom, Lindsay takes this dynamic production to another level.

EX-BSU FOOTBALL PLAYER ON REALITY SHOW

If you've never seen "Trip Flip" - a Travel Channel series that grabs two people and throws them into a wild, once-in-a-lifetime adventure vacation - you're excused.

But you might want to tune in at 7 p.m. Wednesday for a couple of half-hour episodes with Idaho connections.

First, two Florida women are taken to the Gem State for activities that include BASE jumping off the Perrine Bridge, sturgeon fishing and skijoring (horse-pulled skiing).

Then at 7:30, former Boise State tight end Gabe Linehan is featured in a jaunt to Costa Rica, where he and girlfriend Kimi Roth go zip-lining and rafting, and gaze down on the jungle from an open-air gyrocopter.

18-YEAR-OLD BLUES SHREDDER CURRY

If you couldn't afford to see Joe Bonamassa recently at the Morrison Center, take heart.

Bonamassa was once a teenage singer-guitarist blowing minds for affordable ticket prices - just like Matthew Curry is now.

Curry, 18, will bring his blues-rock band to the Sapphire Room at the Riverside Hotel from 6:30-9 p.m. Thursday. The show is for all ages and is free; you'll be asked for a voluntary donation. Doors open at 5:30 p.m. It's the latest guitar-shredder booking by the Boise Blues Society, which is creating a welcome new trend.

Curry has a bit of Jonny Lang in his bones, from his gravelly, soulful voice (which sounds nothing like a kid's) to his flaming Stratocaster licks. Find out more at Matthewcurry.com, or check him out on YouTube. (Like when he's jamming at 12 years old with Tommy Castro.)

This summer, Curry will tour as the opener for the Doobie Brothers and Peter Frampton, as well as opening for the Steve Miller Band and Journey.

TONIGHT IN 'THE OTHER STUDIO'

Should bands like Boston and Black Flag still tour when they're missing the majority of their original members? How about bands that just seem as if they're losing punch, like the Pixies? Join Tim Johnstone and me as we discuss these touchy subjects, plus spin music from Sturgill Simpson, St. Vincent, Franz Ferdinand and more. "The Other Studio" airs at 9 p.m. Sundays on 94.9 FM The River.

IN SCENE MAY 25

• A review of Moe Joe's Breakfast Eatery in Meridian. (Two words: Good. Stuff.)

• A roundup of summer arts camps.

• You can't make bourbon from potatoes, but there is a Caldwell distillery offering a new one.

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