You’re a thief of love!

That’s potentially the best line I’ve heard in live theater in a long time, as delivered by pint-sized jilted boyfriend Hugo Peabody in Runaway Stage Production’s Youth Musical Theater Workshop’s production of Bye Bye Birdie.

Tommy Weber’s Hugo is just one of the fun characters to romp enthusiastically across the stage. The story is remarkably current: an unsuspecting small town girl, Emily Kelly’s Kim MacAfee, is chosen to kiss goodbye Elvis-esque Conrad Birdie (Andrew Burt – a showstopper with his emoting and gyrating) as he leaves for the Army. Some biting and funny social commentary is laced throughout the upbeat, typically lively musical comedy score.

This is a kids production – none of the actors is over 16 and many are quite a bit younger. It’s not super polished, but it’s also at no loss for comedic highlights – scripted and otherwise.

There’s only one show left, tomorrow, September 14th, at 7pm at the 24th Street Theater. It’s probably the most fun you can have for $5 on a Thursday night.

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