For several years, the movie theater on Main Street in Babylon Village sat with its glass-paned doors papered over with posters from its final showings, grimly pinpointing the exact moment in time those doors had shut.
Last month, those posters came down, and the doors opened to Long Island’s newest and largest professional equity theatre, bringing new light and color to the classic streets of Babylon Village as the stunning Argyle Theatre.
Operating in a town full of old New York charm like Babylon, Mark and Dylan Perlman, the father-son owners of the venue, could think of no better show with which to kick off their inaugural season than Guys and Dolls, sponsored by Forerunner Technologies, Inc.
The classic musical by Loesser, Swerling, and Burrows builds high-stakes tension and love between the high-stakes gamblers and other colorful characters created by New York writer Damon Runyon. As the show opens with the song-named-in-tribute Runyonland, the lights come up on a truly entertaining evening of song and dance.
In this production, the Argyle has built a true gem. With the stage filled with thousands of light bulbs, the only thing that shines brighter than the scenery, which mimics the streets of old Broadway, are the performances of their professional actors pulled fresh from the streets of NEW Broadway.
Getting to this point was no mean feat for the Perlman family, who’ve put several millions of dollars and countless late-evening hours into the project. But if you talk to them, their passion for, and commitment to the performing arts is infectious, which no doubt contributed to their ability to surround themselves with a hardworking team of seasoned professionals both for their in-house staff, and for the production teams hired for their individual productions.
It is a driven team indeed, tackling an ambitious first season full of big-name shows, and with Broadway veteran and Argyle Artistic Director Evan Pappas at the helm, their production schedule promises a thoroughly fun upcoming year of performance. From Guys and Dolls and old New York, the Argyle takes its patrons down to Baltimore just a few decades later with Hairspray, a family-fun celebration of 60s music and dance, sponsored by the Post Office Cafe. After that, the stage goes back in time, past the second star on the right, and straight on til morning to Peter and the Starcatcher, a heartfelt exploration of JM Barrie’s well-loved Peter Pan characters. Then, a shorter skip in both time and geography to cathedral life in Paris and the uplifting Disney version of the originally tragic tale, Victor Hugo’s Hunchback of Notre Dame. Next, the Argyle keeps moving east through Europe for Spring Awakening, catching a glimpse into the torments and explorations of youth in German Catholic school, set to a score of rock songs as memorable as those relatable feelings of our own youths. Finally, the team loops back around to old New York and the streets of Broadway with a production of Mel Brooks’ hilarious first stage musical The Producers.
Season tickets are available, and come with significant savings and perks, but shows can be seen by individually purchasing tickets as well. Both can be purchased at ArgyleTheatre.com, or by calling the box office, at 844-631-LIVE (5483).
Guys and Dolls 5/10/18-6/17/18
Peter and the Starcatcher 9/13/18-10/21/18,
The Hunchback of Notre Dame 11/8/18-12/30/18
Spring Awakening 1/17/19-2/24/19
The Producers 3/14/19-4/21/19.