Former Guiding Light stars Tom Pelphrey and Ron Raines reunited at the opening night of Pelphrey’s new play, End of the Rainbow. Pelphrey portrays the young fiancé of Judy Garland (Tracie Bennett), Mickey Deans. In a glowing review of the production, The New York Times applauded Bennett’s performance, calling it an “electrifying interpretation of Garland.”
What Ms. Bennett is doing, though, transcends impersonation. Yes, she has the nervy body language and linguistic tics down pat. And when she sings, she matches Garland’s late-career vocal stylings tremolo for tremolo.
The NYT also weighed in on Pelphrey’s role:
Certainly the other characters in “Rainbow” feel that heat. Chief among them are Mickey Deans (a perfectly cast Tom Pelphrey), Garland’s manager and much younger husband-to-be (her fifth), and Anthony (a wonderful Michael Cumpsty), her pianist on this trip. (Jay Russell plays an assortment of other roles.) To these men falls the assignment of keeping Garland sober and making sure she shows up for her performances at the club, the Talk of the Town.
Jay Russell, Tom Pelphrey and Tracie Bennett
Tom Pelphrey and mother Laurie Pelphrey
Jay Russell and Tom Pelphrey
Jay Russell, Tom Pelphrey, Michael Cumptsy and Tracie Bennett