PICK! ASR Theater ~~ SAL’s “Guys and Dolls” Hits all the Right Notes!

By Sue Morgan

Ready to be swept away on a whirlwind of roguish charm, romance, and toe-tapping tunes? Treat yourself to Sonoma Arts Live’s production of Guys and Dolls.

This jubilant musical masterpiece, brought to life by a sensational cast and spot-on production, is a guaranteed crowd-pleaser that will leave you grinning from ear to ear.

Set in the bustling streets of 1930s-era New York City, Guys and Dolls follows the antics of a motley crew of high-rolling gamblers and vivacious showgirls and the earnest temperance workers intent on saving their souls.

“1930s-era New York City in “Guys and Dolls” at Sonoma Arts Live.

Enter the world of Nathan Detroit (played with a combination of panache and haplessness by SAL newbie, but seasoned performer Skyler King) charismatic mastermind behind the oldest permanent floating craps game in town.

…Grab your lucky charm, roll the dice, and immerse yourself in this wonderful play…

Desperately trying to find a safe spot for his next nefarious gathering, Detroit tries to acquire $1,000 (needed to hold the game at a local garage) from slick and suave Sky Masterson (given unexpected depth of character by Andrew Smith), a high-stakes gambler with an insatiable appetite for unconventional wagers. Detroit bets Sky that he won’t be able to persuade prim and prudish temperance worker Sergeant Sarah Brown (pitch perfect Maeve Smith) to have dinner with him in Havana.

The Hot Box Girls in Sonoma Arts Live’s “Guys & Dolls” See ’em while they’re hot! Opening July 14th!

Love, however, finds its way into the hearts of these streetwise hustlers when Nathan’s long-suffering fiancée, Miss Adelaide (beautifully executed by gifted Jenny Veilleux) decides it’s time for him to ditch the shady lifestyle and settle down. With her irresistible charm, hilarious accent, and fervent belief in Nathan’s 14-year-long promise to marry, Adelaide uses every ounce of guile she possesses in a desperate bid to secure a wedding date. But the true test of love and faith falls upon Sky, whose high stakes wager to woo Sarah and prove that love can conquer even the most unlikely of pairings turns out to be much more than a dare.

Standout performers such as Jonathen Blue as Nicely Nicely—whose rousing rendition of “Sit Down, You’re Rockin’ the Boat,” was a crowd favorite—as well as Rick Love’s cigar-chomping menace as Chicago gangster Big Jule, help to round out this outstanding ensemble.

Gamblers in Sonoma Arts Live’s “Guys & Dolls”, running July 14th-30th.

With a legendary score by Frank Loesser, the irresistible melodies will have you tapping your feet and humming along in no time. From the iconic “Luck Be a Lady” to the comical ode to psychosomatic distress “Adelaide’s Lament” (a side-splitting show-stopper as performed by Veilleux), the music seamlessly weaves its way into the fabric of the story, leaving you longing for more.

Under the expert direction of the brilliant creative team (Larry Williams, director: Liz Andrews, choreographer; Frank Sarubbi, lighting design; Laurynn Malilay, sound design, and all their cohort, the simple set manages to capture the essence of 1930s New York, the costumes add a vibrant splash of color, and the understated choreography elevates the music. Best of all is the convincing chemistry between the romantic leads, not surprising as the Smiths (Sarah and Sky) are husband and wife in real life, but also holds true for Veilleux and King, as Detroit and Miss Adelaide.

Cast of “Guys & Dolls” at work.

Guys and Dolls is a jubilant celebration of love, misadventure and the power of redemption. With its infectious spirit, catchy tunes, and effervescent performances, this exuberant musical is a must-see for theatre enthusiasts and newcomers alike. Grab your lucky charm, roll the dice, and immerse yourself in this wonderful play that will leave you grinning, clapping, and begging for an encore!


Sue Morgan is a Senior Contributing Writer at Aisle Seat Review and a voting member of the San Francisco Bay Area Theatre Critics Circle. Contact: sstrongmorgan@gmail.co



ProductionGuys and Dolls
Written byMusic and Lyrics by: Frank Loesser

Book by: Jo Swerling and Abe Burrows
Directed by
Larry Williams
Producing CompanySonoma Arts Live
Production DatesJuly 14th - 30th
Production AddressRotary Stage: Andrews Hall, Sonoma Community Center
276 E. Napa Street, Sonoma
Tickets$25 – $42
Reviewer ScoreMax in each category is 5/5
Aisle Seat Review Pick?YES!