“Tootsie” Will Have you Laughing Your Stockings Off

Review by Molly Alderson

It’s not hard to see why “Tootsie” has been named “Broadway’s Funniest New Musical” by sources like Rolling Stone, The Los Angeles Times, and The New York Post. Aronoff theatergoers were nearly rolling out of their seats in laughter during Thursday’s opening night performances. So much so, that the actors had to stop at various points during the performance to wait for the audience to settle down. 

Have Things Change Since the 1982 Movie “Tootsie” Film?

It’s been almost 40 years since Dustin Hoffman starred in the satirical romantic comedy, “Tootsie”. And, while political climates, women’s roles in society, and a general understanding of the drag community have changed significantly since 1982 – the new modern-age twist on the story provides a contemporary perspective to the classic storyline. 

“Tootsie” tour. Photo provided.

The Plot of Tootsie

The musical loosely follows the movie’s story about Michael Dorsey (played by Drew Becker) a struggling actor in present-day New York City – desperate for work. Unable to hold down a job because of his narcissism and ‘difficult to work with’ reputation Michael decides he needs to explore a new avenue – in a pair of sling-back pumps. He disguises himself as a woman ‘Dorothy Michaels’ and lands the lead in a new Broadway musical. 

The entire cast was filled with show-stopping performances (literally). Specifically from Michael’s two closest ‘friends’; his neurotic, but endearing ex-girlfriend, Sandy (played by Payton Reilly), whose fast-paced and perfectly timed comedic delivery was delightful. And coworker, roommate, and snarky best buddy, Jeff (played by Jared David Michael Grant) was an audience favorite. Let’s not forget Michael’s love interest Julie (played by Ashley Alexandra) who was a belting beauty and alongside the other over-dramatized characters, provided an authentic warmth to the stage. 

“Tootsie” tour. Photo provided.

Overall, there was extraordinary talent across the stage and a great representation of backgrounds thanks to excellent casting decisions made by Binder Casting. 

Ticketing for Tootsie

With classic broadway dance numbers, fantastical costumes (and quick changes), and lyrics with a ‘Producers’-style wit, David Yazbek and Robert Horn’s “Tootsie” is an unexpected masterpiece. Tickets are on sale from March 7th – 19th – https://www.cincinnatiarts.org/events/detail/tootsie 

*Note: material in this performance is not suitable for members under 10.