Saturday, January 15, 2011

Ring Round the Moon

Yesterday was opening night for the three act play Ring Round the Moon at the Lakewood Playhouse. After several weeks of rehearsal for me and even more for many of the cast members we had a live and lively audience last night, which brings another level of energy to all the performances.

The actors who I am performing with are all wonderful and talented. They had their lines, blocking, dancing and characterizations off book and well formed with days to spare before we opened. That gave us the opportunity to run the show through several times over in advance, which is great, but leaves you wanting somewhat. It is when the audience is introduced that the world the director, designers, stage management and costumers have created through the show comes alive completely.

The show is in three acts and with intermission runs for three hours, which can tire you out. But with the audience there, obviously engaged until the final bow, it provides plenty of energy for the task.

One of the great surprises for me from last night was one particular scene that plays out an important dramatic moment that requires several shifts of mood from the actors and is also reasonably lengthy. It is also full of very funny moments, which you can forget about after hearing it many times over, as it becomes exacted by the players. Well it soared yesterday and the laughter from the audience actually gave it greater impact.

This is the first non-musical I have done in YEARS and it has been a blast. Also new to me is doing a show in the round. A very immersive experience to say the least. I have done shows with two of the other actors but for the majority this will be my first experience. It has been a wonderful one at that.

For information you can go to http://www.lakewoodplayhouse.org/.

Here is how the director David Domkoski describes his sense of the show:

What excites me about Ring Round The Moon is Christopher Fry's extraordinary language, the vividness of the images he creates and his delightful word play. Towards the end of the play one characters describes another as 'scrupulous and considerate, but not considerabl...e,' or as another character describes himself, 'I am acting providence tonight. I deflect the influence of the stars. The stars, twinkling up there with9ut an inkling of what's going to happen tonight." Very Oscar Wilde-ish. The play was once described as being a 'soufflĂ© with razor blades”.It's not all fun and games as it might first appear. Beneath the laughter, Fry explores some serious social issues. The play is a cross between Cinderella and Pygmalion. Cinderella in this case is a poor but highly principled dancer hired by a cynical and manipulative young aristocrat to break up his less worldly and love smitten brother's engagement.


The Suburban Times has a nice write up of the show and gives due to the actors and their roles.

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