‘Route 66’ Serves Up Nostalgic Survey Of Jukebox Hits

February 6, 2024



Route 66 – Courtesy of Zach Rosing. Used with permission.

The majority of the audience at Friday’s opening night of “Route 66” were Boomers, but fans of American pop music of the 50’s and early 60s, of any age will thoroughly enjoy this lightening paced 90-minute review presented  at The Studio Theatre at The Center of the Performing Arts by Actors Theatre of Indiana.The production, which is smartly directed and choreographed by popular, ATI performer Cynthia Collins, also the theatre’s Emeritus Co-Founder, the show was created by Tony winning Roger Bean.

“(Get Your Kicks on) Route 66” is a popular R & B blues song, composed in 1946 by American songwriter Bobby Troup. The lyrics describe a coast-to-coast road trip on U.S. Route 66, a highway which stretched along the western two-thirds of the U.S. from Chicago, Illinois, to Los Anges, California. The song became a classic tune with several renditions recorded by various bit name artists.

The superbly talented, triple threat cast consisted of Keiran Danaaan, Brett Mutter, Eric Olson and Craig Underwood They all shined individually as well as collectively as, they moved continuously about the stage, effortlessly executing Collin’s sprightly choreography.

Route 66 – Courtesy of Zach Rosing. Used with permission.

Standing out for his comic flair and impressive vocals was former Indy resident Underwood, now New York based, who once performed regularly in Central Indiana and whom I have always admired for his distinctive versatility.

Consisting of 34 of the most popular rock and roll hits of the 3d0th century the show included such classics as “Dead Man’s Curve,” “King of the Road,” “Six Days on the Road,” “Little GTO,” “Fun, Fun, Fun,” and many others.

The wildly entertaining production is handsomely enhanced the contributions of the show’s creative team of Brandon Vos, who leads a trio of first-rate musicians, scenic designer Bernie Killian, costume designer Andrew Starnes,lighting designer Dustin Druckman, and sound designer Zach Rosing.

“Route 66” continues through Feb. 18. For information and tickets visit thecenterpresents.org


photo: Josh Humble

About Tom

Journalist, producer, director, Emmy Award-winning documentary filmmaker, arts administrator, TV contributor, actor, model, writer and lyricist, Tom Alvarez has had an extensive career in media and the fine arts and continues to be an enthusiastic and devoted fan of both. His passion and unique background grant him insight, access and perspective to cover, promote and review the arts in Indianapolis, Central Indiana and beyond. Follow him on social media @tomalvarezartswriter and @tomalvarez1.

Alvarez has been writing about theatre, dance, music, cinema and visual arts for 40 years. His work has appeared in the Indianapolis Star, NUVO, Indianapolis Monthly, Arts Indiana, Unite Magazine, Dance Magazine, NOTE Magazine, and Examiner.com, among many other print and online platforms. A former contributor to Across Indiana on WFYI-TV, he currently has a regular performing arts segment on WISH-TV’s Life. Style. Live!

A principal of Klein & Alvarez Productions, LLC, Alvarez co-created “Calder, The Musical” and is the managing director of Magic Thread Cabaret. As an actor-model, he has appeared in numerous TV and print ads and is represented by the Helen Wells Agency and Heyman Talent Artists Agency.

On the Aisle Team

  • Creation, content, and publishing: Tom Alvarez
  • Graphic design:- Casey Ross
  • Web development: Clay Mabbitt

Leave a comment

* required field