Mount Vernon High School The King and IBy Cappies • May 9th, 2007 • Category: Cappies
Mount Vernon High School’s performance of Rodgers and Hammerstein’s The King and I was smart, interesting, colorful, et cetera et cetera et cetera. The cast worked well together and helped compensate for weaker members, both vocally and with staging.
The King (junior Brad Witucki) and Anna (senior Elaina Daoulas) dance the polka
The show, based on the novel Anna and the King of Saim by Margaret Landon, follows the English school teacher Anna on her road to understanding the customs of Saim, while trying to introducer her western philosophies to the people. Anna becomes the teacher of the King’s children, but soon becomes dissatisfied with the way the King treats her and his other subjects. Thinking that she can no longer be of any use Anna is about to leave when she is told that the King is dying. Instead decides to stay and help Crown Prince Chulalongkorn, her favorite pupil, to rule his people.
While the accompaniment created awkward pauses at the beginning of songs and made the transition from acting to singing shaky, actors seemed to be comfortable and well rehearsed in the musical arrangement and their vocals.
The King (junior Brad Witucki) praying to Buddha for guidance as Anna (senior Elaina Daoulas) watches.
The acting was generally superior, and while some characters seemed forced and lacking in energy the leads more than made up for it. Brad Witucki (the King) had amazing comedic timing and delivered every line perfectly. His accent was consistent throughout the entire show. Elaina Daoulas was also excellent in her portrayal of the strong and opinionated Anna.
It was not only the leads however that garnered all the attention in this show. Katelyn Arthur shined in the many roles she played and was a magnificent dancer. Her ballet during “Small House of Uncle Thomas” was exquisite. Similarly, the mothers and children ensemble was adorable especially since Mount Vernon solicited the help of some of the districts younger thespians (elementary school children).
Mrs. Anna (Elaina Daoulas, senior) is “Getting To Know You” – surrounded by the King’s children and wives.
If vocals left something to be desired, the set (Jasmine Roberts) did the complete opposite. The palace consisted of an elaborate backdrop of golden steps and a Buddah statue. They used a scrim, or gauze curtain, to depict scenes that took place on the docks of the waterfront city. Lighting (also Roberts) was simple for the most part which added needed contrast to scenes like the ballet which were more light intensive. The costumes were gorgeous and really helped the story along, depicting changes in time and adding small visual jokes.
Overall the performance was really something wonderful.
by Taekia Blackwell of TC Williams
This review was written by a Cappies high school critic. The Cappies were founded in 1999, for the purpose of celebrating high school theater arts and providing a learning opportunity for theater and journalism students. You can learn more at cappies.com.
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