Review: Divas! Drama! Dancing! Dreamgirls the Musical Delivers.

Moya Angela stars as Effie White.
Dreamgirls tells the tale of a 1960's all-girl group a la The Supremes who rise to superstardom only to find that fame isn't all it's cracked up to be. Think E! True Hollywood Story - but with a much snazzier soundtrack.

The current revival tour, at the Paramount Theatre through Sunday, boasts a cast that can outsing everyone in 2007's star-studded film adaptation, including Oscar winner Jennifer Hudson.

Moya Angela stars as the Effie White, a sassy chanteuse leading aspiring trio The Dreams, backed by Deena Jones (Syesha Mercado) and Lorrell Robinson (Adrienne Warren). During a visit to Chicago, they're discovered by car salesman turned agent Curtis Taylor, Jr. (Chaz Lamar Sheperd) who lands them a gig singing backup for rock star of the moment James "Thunder" Early (Chester Gregory). They quickly rise as stars in their own right. But when Curtis replaces Effie with Deena as his lead singer and leading lady, well... it gets ugly.

In an emotionally exhausting show containing close to 40 musical numbers, it was the characters that demonstrated the most vocal chops that earned the greatest applause. Angela's brokenhearted rendition of the show's most famous song "And I Am Telling You I'm Not Going" kept the audience hushed for five-plus minutes, until they erupted in whistles and cheers. But the best by far was Gregory's "I Want You Baby," a hilarious James Brown-inspired performance, complete with several ear-splitting falsetto rifts that could surely be heard even outside the Paramount.

Dreamgirls plays at the Paramount until Sunday. Tickets are $27-$70, available online at,, or Tickets also available by calling 877-STG-4TIX (4849). Visit for times.

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