Saltzman illuminates the self-loathing Hart (Ben D. Goldberg, marvelously invested, if too handsome by half), pulling vintage items from his output with Rodgers (ever-stalwart Brett Ryback) into commentary.
Goldberg brings Larry Hart to life in all his dimensions, so that like those around him, we find ourselves both frustrated by Larry’s self-destructive impulses and rooting for him to find the happiness he deserves. Not surprisingly, the popular L.A. cabaret star croons Rodgers & Hart with the best of them.
Goldberg, too, has a way with a song that I can only describe as singing with his eyes. “You Are Too Beautiful” is his best in the show, and after a series of more active scenes, offers a well-earned moment of heartbreaking introspection.
The actors hold that stage with conviction. I was most impressed by Allison Byrnes’ bitter Masha and Ben Goldberg’s beautifully detailed Tusenbach.
Ben D. Goldberg as Romeo, sexy, sultry and strong in the first act, showcases his range of talent when he turned on his comic timing as the Duke in the second act.