Revisiting the heyday of department stores and five-and-dimes

Jon Bon Jovi

Actors in 'Jersey Boys' learn methods at 'Frankie Camp'

Actors in 'Jersey Boys' learn methods at 'Frankie Camp'

Frankie Valli made it seem so easy, spinning out those distinctive falsetto notes in hit songs as lead singer for the Four Seasons, starting 51 years ago with "Sherry." But what came naturally to Valli takes honing for the guys who have to approximate his vocal cords in the hit bio-musical "Jersey Boys."

The success of the show, which returns to Baltimore next week, depends to a large extent on filling that central role persuasively.

"The score is so difficult," says Katie Agresta, the seasoned New York-based vocal coach who has worked with the likes of Jon Bon Jovi and Cyndi Lauper. "Typically, a lead in a Broadway musical has maybe five...