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Herndon High School Pippin (Cappies)

By • Apr 27th, 2007 • Category: Cappies

David Miranda (Pippin), Kate Parkin (Catherine) and Nate Tao (Theo)

Punk rock and medieval history are two concepts rarely seen together, but were blended into a fascinating fantasy world in Herndon High School‘s Pippin. Young Pippin (David Miranda) is on the timeless quest to find himself and the show recounts all the trials he must endure. The punk rock theme helped to make Pippin’s story more accessible as a high school production and was cleverly incorporated through staging, costuming, choreography and ensemble work.

The highlight of the show was the enthusiasm and energy of the large ensemble. “Glory” was particularly well done with the ensemble fighting an epic battle in slow motion while Lead Players 1 and 2 (Tyler Andere and Samantha Nees) did a tap dance in front. Andere and Nees worked well together and helped to move the story along as it jumped from location to location.

Miranda played a bewildered Pippin gradually gaining more confidence as his journeys take him along. Scenes between Pippin and his father King Charles (Nico Aquino) were particularly amusing with the physical interactions between the taller son and shorter father. Physicality was also strong as Pippin explores his sexuality in “With You” with the group of “Sexy Women.” Along with the ensemble, minor characters helped to shape the story and add humor. Katrina Rodakowski played Fastrada, Pippin’s step-mother, as an over the top seductress obsessed with making her favorite son Lewis (AJ Miller) king. Rodakowski and Miller were an odd couple in the number “Spread a Little Sunshine.” Not appearing until the second act were Pippin’s love interest, Catherine (Kate Parkin) and her son Theo (Nate Tao). Parkin and Miranda’s voices sparkled in the sweet ballad “Love Song.”

Costumes by Kaity Cookson, Christine Malec, and Vinita Phonseya reflected the glam rock style and encompassed a range from medieval corsets to glittery leg warmers. Set and painting design by Dustin Vandenberg, Eliana Reyes, Gray Akers, and Austin Lawrence, added to the punk atmosphere with a deconstructed look to the castle with scaffolding. There were some problems with the sound dropping out at key points.

Herndon’s Pippin was an enjoyable romp through a medieval fantasy world.

by Elizabeth Venz of Robinson.

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2 Responses »

  1. Herndon High School Pippin (ShowBizRadio)…

    Listen to our review of Herndon High School’s production of Pippin [MP3 5:23 1.5MB].
    Laura: A few weeks ago we began publishing Cappies Reviews. The Cappies are high school students reviewing high school productions. On Saturday we were fortunate…

  2. I was privileged to have the opportunity to see Pippin. It’s been a long time since I’ve seen a high school production, and I was amazed by the level of professionalism by both the tech staff and the performers.

    Having worked with Stage Manager Sallie Hall on productions outside of Herndon High School, I expected the technical aspects of the show to run smoothly and for the actors to never miss a cue. As usual, Sallie delivered a technically flawless performance marred only by microphone issues that can’t be controlled from the booth.

    As a director, I’ve come to appreciate the talents of light and sound designers more with every show I do. The HHS staff did an incredible job of creating a design that enhanced the overall stage experience for both the actors and the audience.

    A functional and appealing set design can be difficult to achieve at any level of theatre, but the Pippin set surpassed any expectations I might have had — and far exceeded the set of the production I performed in! Props to T-boy and the crew for an eye-catching set design that served its purpose well.

    I won’t address the individual performances for fear of leaving anyone out, but suffice it to say that Ms. Beaver is fortunate to have such a large pool of talent to draw from. Congratulations to all on a terrific production!