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  • Writer's pictureKristyn Burtt

How a Pandemic & Technology Created Another Chapter for ‘Cherry Boom Boom’

Cherry Boom Boom is a production that’s proving how outside-the-box ingenuity and a boost from technology are crucial to a pandemic. The immersive Americana rock-n-roll dance show originally opened in 2016 at the Tropicana Theater in Las Vegas, Nevada. After a short run there, the show came back to the Strip in August 2019 for a triumphant return to the Hooters’ Night Owl Showroom.

About seven months into its run, the show was shut down by the COVID-19 pandemic and the contract expired in August 2020. So where does Cherry Boom Boom go from here? The production’s creator and director, Lindsley Allen, has some big ideas — some are already in progress.

"The first couple of months were really challenging just moving everything online and figuring it all out myself,” Allen says. “We did some online classes with Cherry Boom Boom and then put together a virtual watch party from older footage [of our show] at Harvelle's [in Santa Monica, California]. We also did summer school classes — Boom Boom Skool."

While those options worked for Allen in the first few months of the pandemic, she wanted to take on greater challenges as a director and create more opportunities for her dancers.

"In July, Harvelle's called me and asked if we would like to do a live stream show. I had to change the way we did the show,” she reveals. “This was a new chapter for us. I wanted to attack it more like an episodic music video. We added a few numbers and I dove into each character deeper."

One of the biggest challenges to this venture is the financial burden Allen has shouldered. She wanted the show to evolve during the pandemic, but she had to do it alone.

"I had to take the financial responsibility for Cherry Boom Boom. I don't think people realize that. The show is an independent production and our main investor lost his big job, so that was a ripple effect, “ Allen says. “I have been carrying it on my own shoulders until we get through this. There is so much uncertainty, though — I don't know when Vegas is going to come back."

There will be another show in November and it will be completely different from their July performance. Cherry Boom Boom will be a hybrid performance with the dancers being filmed inside Harvelle’s for an online audience and an outside audience will watch the show projected onto a wall while enjoying dinner and drinks.

Allen continues to be upbeat about the situation because it forced her to stretch her artistic abilities and think outside the box. Cherry Boom Boom's next chapter blossomed through an unprecedented time.

"I learned a lot about technology, being a leader and moving the show forward,” Allen sums up. “From every direction, I took it on in a whole new way and instead of being stuck to what it was, Cherry Boom Boom pivoted to a new audience and a new medium. By trying new things and continuously creating, Cherry Boom Boom rises again.”

Visit Cherry Boom Boom’s website for details on upcoming performances and classes.


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