If “Sex Anyone” were a movie, Siskel & Ebert would have agreed. This new musical play rates an enthusiastic two thumbs up. the one-act production explores a young man’s struggle with sexual obsession, identity and his own self-acceptance in a warm, heartfelt, and witty musical. The one-hour play is timely and perception, and loosely autobiographical by John Freed, who spent 30 years as a New York Times editor and who wrote the book, lyrics and music.
This sensitive work tells the story of John (Tom Brayden) who can’t stop frequenting sex clubs in his search for love and connection, as he struggles for acceptance and with childhood losses a. He meets Marty at a SAO meeting and they instantly connect, then move in together. But Marty (Fernando Christian) has his own demons and uses alcohol to ease his pain. Can the two find happiness together and resolve their issues?
Along the way, main character John’s SAO sponsor, Jake (David Colville) is dying of cancer but but ultimately helps John to work through his conflicts and his pain. The uplifting ending sees main character John with clearer self-insight and acceptance as his relationship with Marty develops.
The script — 10 times in writing — is clever, genuine, and sometimes funny. If you’ve ever sat through a 12-step meeting, the dialogue rings true to the sometimes bizarre sessions, Dialogue between the main characters is revealing, poignant and insightful.
A delightful surprise is the quality of the musical score. It’s original, topical, and just plain fun. Freed;s tunes and lyrics are highly original, sometimes memorable, and a few will have you humming on your way home. Boyfriend Marty’s belting out “Send Me a Man” had the opening’s audience clapping their hands, swaying in time, and all but stamping their feet — it’s terrific!
This isn’t a glitzy production — keep in mind it’s brand new and aimed at attracting backers on its way to Off-Broadway. But it’s well worth your time.. “Sex Anyone” is an engaging, entertainment glimpse of a journey to self-realization and optimistic growth. Go and enjoy! You’ll be happy to did.
What I didn't like
As good as the musical score and vocals are, they suffer because the only accompaniment is a piano. A broader orchestration would unquestionably enhance the catchy, highly original score — ideally, it’ll come in time.
Staging and the production are not slick or glitzy. It’s a tiny venue and obviously on a limited budget, but the originality and script make up for it. Overall, good entertainment, despite a few growing pains.
This reviewer would like to see the relationship between John and Marty more developed at the outset — they’re at once head over heels and I would have liked to have a bit seen more of why and how. the chemistry between the two also could be strengthened, but the director may be able to give guidance here. with this
My overall impression
Two thumbs up! Sensitive, timely, insightful and perceptive. Sometimes funny, sometimes sad, but consistently very real. Go and enjoy “Sex Anyone” for what it is — well worth the price of admission.