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new musicals inc · Ages 10+ · family friendly · flashing lights · world premiere · 90 mins · United States of America

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DAVID MARKLEY certified reviewer June 27, 2019
More heartfelt than I expected. I completely recognize the characters and the story that The Bully Problem brings forward. I remember being bullied in high school and looking for a place where I fit in. I created the computer club, for goodness sake, how much more of a geek did I need to be. I found my outlet in college among amazing friends. We formed a club that welcomed everyone and sometimes met in a basement. Okay, I’ll be honest. I think I know these characters and it had me moved to tears of joy at points. This is what we all need: a world free from bullying where people can explore the best of themselves!... full review
DAVID MACDOWELL BLUE certified reviewer July 05, 2019
tagged as: Good · Wonderful · silly · fun · unpretentious · hopeful · strong · funny
Anyone who does not feel a twinge of sympathy just with the title of this show--I don't understand you. At least, hopefully I do not. Bullies and bullying cause so much misery, so much long term damage to children...yet solving the problem seems to involve no easy solution. The Bully Problem is a musical aimed at children. Refreshingly it speaks to children but does not do so by speaking down. It lacks condescension. Because of this, it also speaks directly to the child still inside each of us. Especially those who didn't fit in, who were different in some way, who somehow had "target" glowing over their heads which certain other children could see--to their sadistic glee. The plot? Pure fantasy! A brilliant kid in Junior High ... full review
NOEL KATZ certified reviewer June 15, 2019
tagged as: fun · Fast-paced · tuneful · funny
In olden days, raves often used the phrase “the bright new musical comedy” and having just seen the bright new musical comedy called The Bully Problem, I find myself thinking about how it exemplifies many meanings of the word, “bright.” We say intelligent people are bright, and Michael Gordon Shapiro’s book, music and lyrics are, first and foremost, smart. The plot is on the silly side, but there’s a level of thoughtfulness in the plentiful jokes, and cogent construction in all the songs. There’s also bright in a musical sense, as in Oscar Hammerstein’s lyric, “Brisk, lively, merry and bright - allegro.” The Bully Problem rockets along with unflagging energy. This feat is particularly hard to pull off these days, and it’s a tribute to Shapir... full review
MONIQUE LEBLEU the los angeles beat, better lemons certified reviewer June 22, 2019
tagged as: dance · fun · comedy · musical
So far, this is my favorite musical to come out of Hollywood Fringe this year. Remember how you felt the first time you performed in, or even saw, your first high school or college musical? Remember that giddy excitement that sent warm shivers down your spine, instilling a feeling that told you this is how it should always be? If for some reason you've since lost that passionate feeling about musical theatre, then The Bully Problem will resurrect it.... full review
ROBIN DOWDS certified reviewer June 16, 2019
Great energy, delightful music and writing, charming cast and characters. 90 minutes of great fun.... full review
SHARI BARRETT broadway world los angeles certified reviewer June 16, 2019
tagged as: ensemble · nerds · bullies · teenagers · musicals
As a former Junior High teacher, I can certainly understand the difficulties faced by teenagers who just don’t fit the mold of being “popular.” THE BULLY PROBLEM takes the subject and makes it thoroughly entertaining as well as informative thanks to Shapiro’s entertaining music tracks, the brilliant work by Fringe award-winning director/choreographer Joanna Syiek (The Pokemusical, Giraffenstein, Merely Players), and music director Jennifer Lin, who have put together an extraordinary cast of actors who seem to innately comprehend the characters they are portraying and have the ability to work perfectly together as a true ensemble of triple-threat performers. ... full review
KIRE HORTON certified reviewer June 15, 2019
Absolutely Fantastic. This is one of the most polished and entertaining musical I've ever seen. Amazing script, catchy beautiful music, creative staging and choreography, powerhouse performances... full review
ANONYMOUS certified reviewer June 15, 2019
“The Bully Problem” is absolutely delightful and engaging from start to finish. It’s also funny as all get out! Afterwards a group of us were all quoting our favorite lines at one another, still laughing until our faces and sides hurt. But what really makes this show a winner is the sense of hope and empowerment that it embodies. Protagonist Kevin’s journey becomes the audience’s journey, too, as we see how we can all rise up and “be our own [metaphorical] bodyguards.” In an era when school bullying can literally lead to death, and #itgetsbetter is a battle cry, “The Bully Problem” treats a genuinely serious social issue with compassion, humanity, joy, and a healthy dose of humor. The music and songs are catchy and utterably singable and the... full review
BOB LEGGETT indie voice blog certified reviewer June 09, 2019
Our first musical of HFF19 was a dream come true. Michael Gordon Shapiro (with the help of ASCAP and Broadway’s Stephen Schwartz) has created a masterpiece of energetic singing and dancing and a timely story about overcoming obstacles and becoming who you were meant to be. ... full review
SHEILA SILVER certified reviewer June 08, 2019
What a wonderful production! Theatre for Social Change is important in today’s world and The Bully Problem addresses a number of important issues. ... full review