If you love “Big Bands,” you will love “In The Mood!” It captured the essence of the times. Well done!

Favorite moment: Asking the veterans in the audience to stand and be seen. Brought tears to my eyes!”

I would have paid twice the ticket to see it again. Great show.

The show was amazing. The musicians, singers and dancers were all top notch, and the flow of the program was extremely entertaining. I would definitely see it again at this venue. The Balboa Theatre is an ideal venue for this show. When the show returns it will be at Humphrey’s, but I’m a little skeptical if the experience will be as good.

A fantastic evening and definitely one of the best shows ever!!!!!

What a great show. My sisters and I absolutely enjoyed every single moment. It was so moving when they had the active and veterans from each branch of the military stand. As well as the sailor and nurse kiss in Times Square at war’s end. The music was wonderful and the singing and dancing on stage had us wanting get up and dance too. Would definitely recommend this show to any age. I am the youngest of the three and I just LOVED it !!!

Favorite moment: I think my most favorite (even though it all was my favorite) was when they recognized the active and veterans.

It was very upbeat; and the tribute to the men and women of the armed forces was moving.

I loved it. My 14 year old son loved it. My 76 year old father loved it. The music was great. My son plays saxophone, flute and trumpet and thoroughly enjoyed the music. My dad had a memorable time.
Favorite moment: When the band, cast, and audience acknowledged the Veterans and Active Duty Servicemen and women for their service to our country.

jerry and maureen diem

The whole production was wonderful. Singers, dancers and the orchestra were all very good and professional. The selection of music brought back memories and I was surprised that I remembered lyrics to songs not heard in years! I wish the audience had been invited to sing,too but we were called upon once and also to clap during “”Deep in the Heart of Texas.”” Favorite moment: When members of the military were asked to stand during the music to each of the branches of service.

“This was an excellent, well-done professional performance.
Favorite moment: The petite female dancer and her partner”

“If you value the values of the greatest generation, then this is a must.”

It truly gave the music perspective of the 40’s and what the “”mood”” was for that decade.

Favorite moment: The recognition of current and veteran members of the audience

Wow what a show. I was lucky enough to get front row center section seats and it was sooooo worth the money to see this show. The band is amazing and the singers and dancers keep you completely engaged the entire time.
Favorite moment: too many moments to pick a favorite, but one of my favorite sections was the war era music like boogie woogie bugle boy.

Absolutely a must see for an enjoyable evening.. even better if you take a veteran…

WOW–what fun and what talent. It’s always so much more enjoyable to watch entertainers who obviously love what they are doing! An incredible performance. Hope to get a chance to see it again one day.

This was an amazing evening -so full of energy and the cast was so professional – it was better than a Broadway show! Would definitely come to see this again if it comes back to El Paso! The music was phenomenal and brought back so many memories and was reminiscent of all of the big bands, played superbly by the String of Pearls orchestra.

WOW!!!! What a wonderful evening of music from the Big Band Era!!! All the comments that I heard after the show were great!!! People in Wichita Falls who enjoy this music really missed out. Sorry that you didn’t pack the house but believe me when I say “”the show was terrific””!!! Sincerely hope that you will consider coming back to Wichita Falls again. RoseMarie Fidelie

This was my 3rd time seeing In The Mood and it’s better each time. The little “tweaking” you’ve done is great And by the way, I’m almost 84 and a WWII Navy Vet. A Wonderful Show.

My name is Mary Whitesnake-Rambin. I lived in Riverside Ca. and worked at the Sherman Indian School in Dec. 1942. On Friday and Sat. nights the Army would send buses or trucks to get us Indian girls to dance with the GIs at the USO. We even visited the Hollywood Canteen. Your show was perfect. Every song and dance was performed flawlessly, with great feeling and report with the audience. The uniforms, suits and dresses were authentic and the dancing was thrilling. The best thing I could say about the Band is ” they can really Swing!” Thank you for a most enjoyable evening. I wish the spirit of that time could be shared with each following generation. It was a time when everyone knew the future of human kind balanced on the edge of darkness. “Pee hee nah gi gi nee nah” In our Winnebago Indian that means “You have done good for me” and is our deepest expression of gratitude. Mary Whitesnake-Rambin

Music incredible [perfect] singers and dancers amazing the ladies just beautiful the men handsome all so professional i wanted to see it again please return thank you

Thoroughly entertaining. The band, singers and dancers were all fantastic.

I enjoyed “In the Mood”. The second half was very emotional with all the recognitions of the branches of services. Amazing performance.

Great show. Fast paced. Very entertaining. Many highlights. Particularly enjoyed the Paris Medley. I forget one of the tunes. There was “”The Last Time I Saw Paris””, La Vie En Rose””, and at least one other beautiful ballad that I can’t recall. Please tell me the name of that other ballad. Thanks for an excellent show.

Wow! I was so impressed. Also touched, felt patriotic, humbled and elated. Fantastic performance – thank you so much.

What an awesome show! This was my parent’s music but this show is great fun! The lead dancers were FANTASTIC! My dad was a 1st generation American and a career USMC, I am a 33 yr USN wife & my 2 oldest serve in the USN & the USAF–when you recognized the services it was AWESOME! Keep up the great work. Want to send tickets to my mom in MO, but it’s not on the posted schedule! Will send her the CD!

Words would diminish our appreciation and enjoyment of this wonderful production.

You guys ROCK!!!!!!! INCREDIBLE show! Thank you, thank you, THANK YOU! You left all of us in Charleston tonight **IN THE MOOD FOR MORE**!!!! Please come back to our city…we want to see it AGAIN!!!

Saw the show in Beaumont, TX Feb 26. Enjoyed it very much. you have a very talented band, singers and dancers. i only have one small complaint. There was no information about the band members and singers and dancers.i.e. Training, who played with, where etc. Like i said a very small complaint. hope you come to Texas again. All the best

Husband: WWII vet., & knew almost all selections. Musicians were great, and one gal, in particular, had a marvelous voice. Some dance numbers became a bit too repetitive. The costumes, well done, & over-all performance was a success.
Favorite moment: Loved the concept: Recreating this historic time through music & dance.

I was impressed with the orchestra and singers. The music was almost flawless except for one tlow brass moment.. I would see it again.

Favorite moment: The swing, swing, swing drum solo.

This was the best show I have been to in a long time. Song choices were great. Orchestra was great. Singers and Dancers were fantastic. One song flowed into the next. Very patriotic theme. Thought it was wonderful to recognize all military branches and I was honered to give my applause to all those that served in WWII and Korean War, my dad included. The show honored all veterans active duty and retired.

Favorite moment: Honoring vets at end by having them stand by each military branch when announced.

We thought the program was excellent.
Brought back a lot of memories. Favorite moment: All of it.

I totally enjoyed the show and the music. The String of Pearls band was very good. I especially liked that they featured individual musicians. One of the trumpet players and the drummer were spectacular. The dancers and singers were also top notch and finally the music selection was great.

Favorite moment: My favorite part of the show was when they honored all the Veterans by asking them to stand and playing their service branch theme song.

I could go and see it all over again. It was a wonderful performance. I would like to see something like this to come back to Raleigh Memorial Auditorium again.
Favorite moment: Hard to pick that moment. I think it was when the veterans were asked to stand up and be recognized. It was a emotional moment for me.

We enjoyed the music selections and the band and singers/dancers were all very good Favorite moment: Salute to veterans

I was born in the 40’s so I don’t remember the music and dance when it was popular. However, In the Mood is great entertainment for anyone who enjoys music and dance. It both makes you feel good and entertain you.

My husband and I thought the entire show was great, I think you would have had a better turn out if it was advertised more. We just happened to see the ad in the paper a week before the show was scheduled.
Favorite moment: Salute to the Vets

The music was incredible, and unforgettable from the first number to the last encore! Accomplished musicians, singers, and dancers alike brought the music to life from this great era in our country’s history. Don’t miss this show!
Favorite moment: The six-part harmonies on “”I’ll Never Smile Again”” was breathtaking!”

Saw “In the Mood” 11/7/12 in Omaha, NE. The bestest feel good performance ever there was. THANK YOU THANK YOU for putting the show on. Can’t wait for it to come back to Omaha, Nebraska THANK YOU!! HOWARDSILBERG

The Boston Globe

‘In the Mood’ recreates iconic sounds of 1930s, ’40s

When singing and swinging lifted the nation’s spirits

By Terry Byrne

NOVEMBER 18, 2013

Seven decades after World War II, the popular music of that era remains vital.

“That music is part of our culture,” says Bud Forrest, creator and conductor of “In the Mood,” a musical revue that plays at the Cutler Majestic Theatre Nov. 19-24. “In the 1940s everyone was listening to the same kind of music, and it still touches a lot of different heartstrings.”

“In the Mood” pays tribute to the music of the late 1930s and 1940s with a collection of over 40 songs, performed by a 13-piece big band and six singer/dancers who re-create the iconic sounds of Benny Goodman, Glenn Miller, Artie Shaw, and the Andrews Sisters, among others, and swing to the Lindy Hop and the Jitterbug.

Given the age of the material, it seems natural “In the Mood” would appeal to older folks, but Forrest says he’s been amazed by the range of ages in the audience.

“This is our 20th year of touring this show,” he says on the phone from a stop in Wisconsin, “and while we do see older veterans, we also see baby boomers who remember this as the music of their parents and teenagers and 20-somethings who want to see authentic swing dancing. Although they all come for different reasons, by the time they leave they all feel connected to the people and the emotions portrayed in these songs.”

Even though “In the Mood” is a musical revue, director and choreographer Alex Sanchez says he and Forrest created an arc for the show that he hopes connects the audience to the experience.

“We don’t want audiences to simply sit back and listen,” Sanchez says. “We want them to be drawn into this world at this particular moment in time.”

The first act takes place in the late 1930s and includes songs like the “Chattanooga Choo Choo,” “Tuxedo Junction,” and “We Git It.”

“It’s all about a nation picking itself up, about young people coming into their own, feeling hopeful about the future,” say Sanchez.

The music in the second act focuses on World War II and includes “Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy (of

Company B)” and “Over There.” “Everything we’re singing and dancing about in the second act reflects how the war has affected us,” says Sanchez. “What does it mean to be in the armed services, to be stationed far from home?”

Songs like “Stardust,” “In the Mood,” and “Sing Sing Sing” resonate with audiences because they have a strong emotional core, says Forrest, adding, “the big brass section in the String of Pearls Big Band Orchestra raises the energy level a notch or two.”

“I like to say that the band is the seventh principal performer in the show,” says Sanchez. “Their emotional connection to the music is just as important as the singer/dancers.”

To many of the young singers and dancers who perform in the show, World War II and the 1940s may seem like ancient history, so Sanchez creates scenarios for them.

“We have a kind of psychological boot camp at the beginning of rehearsals,” he says with a laugh, “and we talk about what it was like to be 18 to 20 years old in the 1940s. Their age group in the 1940s was born during the Depression and grew up with no guarantees. By age 21, they were already taking on the responsibilities of marriage and kids, and then suddenly they were thrust into a war and sent thousands of miles from home.

“I really try to immerse them in the era,” Sanchez says, “so they’re not just presenting a song, but we can get underneath the music and the lyrics to a story and the emotion behind it.”

Both Sanchez and Forrest say an unexpected bonus of the show is the connections the performers and audience sometimes make with their families.

“I’ve had several dancers say they got to know their grandparents better by talking about what this music meant to them in their youth,” says Sanchez.

“The band is right on stage,” says Forrest, who plays piano, “and we can see the audience and the way they respond to this music.” Veterans in the audience are recognized during the second act, providing “a wonderful feeling of community spirit.”

“I’m not presuming to be Shakespeare,” says Forrest, “but I know this show touches a chord in people. I’ve been doing this for 20 years, but I never take this for granted. It’s amazing to be part of something that has that impact.”

Terry Byrne can be reached at

IN THE MOOD Brings the Boogie to New Orleans

February 3, 2015

by: Heidi Scheurmann

DancersAlright, so unlike most humans who are currently in their mid-twenties, I grew up listening to the tunes of artists like Bing Crosby(not just at Christmastime), Judy garland, Perry Como, Glenn Miller, Frank Siinatra, Nat King Cole, The Andrews Sisters… I could go on forever. I listened to it because my dad listened to it because his dad listened to it. It’s in my blood, I can’t help it. Besides, have you ever given 40s music a really good listen? If you have, you’ll know that there never were smoother voices in this history of forever. Silky smooth, buttery voices. People just don’t sing like that anymore! Not to mention full orchestras backed the singers. Full orchestras! We’re talking piano, drums,

trumpets, trombones, bass (the upright kind), saxophone… I mean these guys really knew how to rock!

More than just bringing bliss to my ears, music of the 1940s makes me nostalgic for a time when you could turn on the radio and not have to worry about hearing profanities. The songs were sweet, sincere, sometimes uplifting, sometimes sorrowful, sometimes downright snarky. But they were always full of spirit, especially surrounding the events of World War II.

Complete with the String of Pearls Orchestra and some singers and swing dancers, IN THE MOOD is a show that celebrates that nostalgia and that spirit by bringing the music of the 1940s right to your hometown. They brought the boogie to New Orleans this past weekend, and if you missed them, try with all your might to catch them in another city. Don’t get stuck in the rut of thinking that only Broadway national tours are the shows to see, because IN THE MOOD is a show that has a lot of heart and the talent to back it up!

If I haven’t convinced you yet, here are some of the reasons why I loved IN THE MOOD:

1. The costumes. Not that all of the attire wasn’t great (because it was), but I was especially glad to see spectator shoes on the gentlemen at some points. Those are the shoes that look like little tuxedos. Usually brown or black, with a white middle. Sort of like a reverse saddle oxford. So dapper! And as for the ladies… Can I please have every single one of those outfits for my closet? Particularly the peplum tops worn during the “Sisters and Brothers Medley” segment, which oddly enough is back in style.

2. “Hey! Ba Ba Re Bop!” complete with audience participation. Seriously… It was so fun! The show is performed “review” or “showcase” style with a narrator (Ryan N. Phillips) who frequently interacted with the audience, but I wasn’t expecting to be invited to participate. Vocalist Dan Faber led this number, and had everyone in the audience bee-bopping along to this swinging song.

3. Two female vocalists Emilie Bienne and Brittney Leigh Morton) stood out during a mash-up of “Skylark” and “Mood Indigo.” These chicks have got some big voices that are totally made to be on stage! The songs were beautifully arranged, and what started out as a soothing melody turned into a power ballad.

4. “Say That We’re Sweethearts Again,” performed by Ryan N. Phillips, was quite the crowd pleaser. It’s one of those songs where you think it’s going to be a sentimental tune, but it turns out to be quite snarky. It involves poison, pushing, kicking, fire, acid, and a hatchet. All reasonable tactics to try and get rid of a less than pleasant significant other, right? Dare I say this, but fans of the Batman animated series might recognize this as a song villain Harley Quinn sang in an episode.

5. My favorite part of the show was “The Sisters and Brothers Medley.” I absolutely love The Andrews Sisters, and it was so fun to hear their songs performed live! The costumes and choreography were on point, and if “Bei Mir Bist Du Schon” really does mean “you’re grand” (or something of that nature) then it describes this segment perfectly. Even if you think you don’t know who The Andrews Sisters are, you do. They are responsible for popularizing “Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy,”and I can only imagine it was their their style that inspired Christina Aquilera’s video for her song “Candyman.”

6. Paige Sabo and Luke H. Jacobs, IN THE MOOD’s resident swing dancers. What a thrill to watch! I’ve always loved to dance, but it takes completely fearless people to really know how to swing. What with all of that jumping and being thrown around I would’ve been so dizzy. But not these guys… they’re pros. So graceful and so energetic all at the same time. It brought me back to the days when I was a little bitty girl watching Bobby Burgess and Cissy King dance on The Lawrence Welk Show. Bravo!

7. The most touching moment of the evening was when the cast gave a salute to the military men and women in the audience. The fact of the matter is that music played an important role to help lift our nation’s spirit as we fought our way through World War II, and it was nice to see those retired and active military heroes recognized. And, as if “America the Beautiful” doesn’t make me teary enough, the audience was moved to their feet (literally) out of appreciation and respect.

Have I convinced yet? Have I convinced you that not only is 40s music to die for, but that seeing IN THE MOOD isn’t an option. You must. See this show, and you will not only increase your musical knowledge repertoire, but you will feed your soul! I’ll even help you out. Click on this link and purchase your tickets right now! You won’t be sorry.



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