Let’s face it. One does not just “see” The Fabulous Palm Springs Follies. One “experiences” it. For the uninitiated, the legendary institution that is the Follies bills itself as “a world-famous, Broadway-caliber celebration of the music, dance, and comedy of Mid-Century America with a cast old enough to have lived it!”
Indeed, the long-legged and limber gentlemen and ladies—who must range in age from 55 to 85 to sing and dance under the able tutelage of maestro and co-creator (with Mary Jardin) Riff Markowitz in the Ziegfeld-style revue—could be your grandparents. But something tells me that neither Gramps nor Granny look like this in a sparkly tuxedo or fishnet stockings that stop at sexy stilettos.
The entire Palm Springs Valley was saddened to hear last June that the Follies would soon be ending its 24-year run at the historic Plaza Theater in Downtown Palm Springs this year. The extravaganza’s farewell season, bittersweetly titled “The Last Hurrah,” is now less than 40 shows from going dark for good. So if you haven’t had a chance to—there goes that word again—“experience” this highly entertaining few hours, make sure you nab some of the few remaining tickets before it’s too late. May 18 is the big finale, and as with every performance until the end is reached, the guest star is none other than 72-year-old celebrated solo artist and background singer Darlene Love, she of the Academy Award-winning documentary “Twenty Feet From Stardom” fame who regaled us with her belting during the Oscars telecast earlier this year.
There are matinees and evenings peppered throughout April and May from Tuesday to Saturday. And don’t be surprised if you see me seated front row center during one or three of them.