How well do Go-Go’s songs fit the story? Sometimes (but not always), better than you’d think. The budding romances between the two younger couples are taboo for different reasons — the one a question of sexual orientation, the other a matter of class distinction — which provides a perfect cue for the four of them to join in on a joyous rendition of “Our Lips Are Sealed.” In another, various characters consummate their clandestine affairs as shadow figures behind a white curtain, humorously set to the tune of “Heaven Is a Place on Earth.”
Other highlights: Whitley's "Here You Are"; Badua's "Vacation"; Crowe's "Mad About You"; Harry and Acker's "This Old Feeling"; Holland's "Beautiful"; and Ashley's entire 15-member ensemble delivers a rousing version of the title song. The exceedingly inventive and energetic choreography is by Kari Twyman.
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The show feels overlong, bogging down in patches to dispense with a lot of expository filler between songs. While a conventional staging of Sidney’s archaic “Arcadia” might have “strained for lack of a serious message,” to quote the funniest line in “Head Over Heels,” all the contemporized touches enable the musical to generally get around that particular problem — and, besides, there’s absolutely no denying that the Go-Go’s soundtrack still has the beat.
“Head Over Heels”
Through Aug. 25. 8 p.m. Wednesdays-Saturdays; 2 p.m. Sundays; 2 p.m. Saturdays (Aug. 17 and 24 only). $20-$50. Actor's Express (at King Plow Arts Center), 887 W. Marietta St. NW, Atlanta. 404-607-7469. actors-express.com.
Bottom line: A real curio.