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Route 66: A Fun, Musical Road Trip

Looking for summer kicks? Head over to Columbia State Historic Park’s Fallon House Theatre for its current production: jukebox musical Route 66.

The latest production by Sierra Repertory Theatre, presented in the historic theater’s comfortably air-conditioned environs, is literally and figuratively a cool blast; even more so when enjoyed in tandem with a pre-show or intermission visit to the adjacent ice cream parlor, conveniently located in the theater’s lobby.

The production, which opened this past weekend and runs through mid-July, is by nostalgic jukebox show creator Roger Bean, who also created The Marvelous Marvelettes.

The show will now run through July 21 at Sierra Rep’s Fallon House Theatre in Columbia State Historic Park with evening performances Fridays and Saturdays at 7 p.m.; matinees Wednesdays at noon and Thursdays, Saturdays and Sundays at 2 p.m.

Co-directed by Sierra Rep Artistic Director Jerry Lee and Executive Producer Scott Viets, Route 66 takes the audience on a full-tilt ride across Route 66 via 1950’s and ‘60’s hit radio tuneage. Interplaying advertising jingles and radio broadcast snippets allow for the four-member cast to change costumes while the backstage crew swaps out sets.

Lee and three other fine actors each bring dozens of “Ensemble” characters to life as they sing and dance their way pretty much continuously through the nearly two-hour show.

Griffin Barr, who traces his musical theater roots to Sierra Rep and now lives in New York City, shines brightly while depicting characters ranging from manly men to femme fatale bombshells. Miguel Ragel Wilson and Alex Figueroa, both last seen in Sierra Rep’s Cinderella, are also impressive and familiar to Sierra Rep audiences. The three and Lee play together quite well and look like they are having the time of their lives while managing to keep things going full-throttle.

Close to 30 songs fuel the show numbers. Among the most well-known are: Route 66; Let’s Go For A Ride; Fun, Fun, Fun and I Get Around; On The Road Again; Dead Man’s Curve, G.T.O. The Little Old Lady From Pasadena, and King Of The Road. Among several other gems that are woven in with great effect are: Beep Beep, Bring My Cadillac Back, Diesel On My Tail, Girl On The Billboard, Highway Patrol, Hot Rod Queen, Long Tall Texan, Truck Drivin’ Man and The Texaco Star Theme.

Diana and Jay Newington, respectively the show’s costume and set designers, have done fine work creating a colorful, campy, fun look and feel down to details that incorporate iconic vintage objects. The production shines through the complementary contributions by music director Jake Gale, choreographer Kate Henderson, sound designer Mateo DeAngelo, lighting designer Isaac Joyce-Shaw, projection designer Jerry Lee, properties designer Matthew Rose, hair and makeup designer Brenda O’Brien and stage manager Ashley Castillo. 

For more details and to purchase tickets visit