The Little Theater on the Square
OK, the time has finally arrived -- the LTOTS is doing a musical I was in. Just the kind of thing I've been waiting for -- oh wait, that already happened with Bye Bye Birdie. Oh well, on to the story.
Curly loves Laurey and Laurey loves Curley -- but since that's not very much to build a musical on, we have to show them acting like 12 year olds who are in the same situation. Even my 8 year old daughter has that one figured out -- a guy and a girl spend most of a movie fighting, but she knows that means they love each other and will be together by the end. And so they are, but not before a barn dance riot and a knife fight (not to mention a brief hallucinogenic episode from Laurey) all take place.
You know, the more I think about this show, the sillier it gets. I'd slam the actors for the absurd accents they all put on -- except that's the way it's scripted. If I were from Oklahoma I might find the whole production insulting. But I digress yet again. Were we better in High School than these professionals on stage? Yes we were -- but let's be honest, most of the professional company at the Little Theater are still in college, or just out -- so it's not like they were that much older or more experienced than we were. Most of our cast was in the school's nationally ranked show choir -- so singing and dancing was something they could do in their sleep. Our's was also a larger cast -- on a larger stage which makes a bit of difference there too. We spent 2 months learning one musical, not 5-8 of them, and we weren't doing to productions on the same stage during the same weekend. So of course we were better -- then again, our Curley actually had curly hair (and a better voice), our Judd Fry was about 6'4", with a beard, so he was a truly menacing character. Our sets were more elaborate (again, because we had more room) -- and we had an actually Surrey with a Fringe on the Top. I say all this, not to slam the LTOTS -- but to say that come fall, your local High School might do a pretty good job. And there were several good performances in Oklahoma! -- Nicholas Dalton was a very good (if not terribly menacing) Judd Fry (and he didn't forget his lines like he did in 7 Brides...)-- and I loved the Ado Annie and Ali Hackum characters. In fact, I keep hoping these those three will be main leads in Grease -- they'd be a welcome improvement over the last version.