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Theater Info for the Washington DC region

Albert Einstein High School Stefanie Hero

By • Nov 5th, 2007 • Category: Cappies

In a world of disappearing daddies, mutton-loving kings, and perfectly coifed megalomaniacs, it is Princess Stefanie’s rather inconvenient responsibility to save the world.

Written by Children of a Lesser God author Mark Medoff, Stefanie Hero incorporates snippets from familiar fairy tales and gives them a twist to form a wry comedy with an inspiring underlying message. Stefanie (Melissa Carter) has had to take charge of the kingdom after her father disappeared to become a knight and her mother absorbed herself in perfecting her self-pity. On top of the typical duties of running a kingdom, she must be a parent to her three siblings and deal with the amourous advances of one Leopold T. Bosco (Freddy Mancilla), kingdom conqueror extraordinaire.

Albert Einstein High School’s production managed to convey a completely foreign land by creative technical design and comical performances. Though sometimes marred by mistakes in the execution of lighting and sound and overall erratic energy levels within the show, Einstein still captivated with original ad-libbing and audience involvement.

Carter effectively played the no-nonsense princess, undercut with a sense of vulnerability. As the comically egotistical, Mancilla cultivated a flamboyant persona which, paired with his amusing ad-libbing and involvement with the audience, made his presence in a scene a welcome addition.

Andrew Kullberg as Horace, Leopold’s horribly disfigured assistant, gave an excellent performance, especially by carrying out the character’s speech impediment consistently yet still understandably. Also, Malika Cherifi‘s Queen Harriet Ann managed to be enjoyably over the top, yet still sympathetic, a feat that others in the show weren’t quite able to manage. The program’s requirement of stagehands participating in the show was aptly carried out by the eight involved, managing to add to the performance and effectively cover the shows many transitions.

The technical crews managed to pull off complex effects, especially the three-headed dragon and creative uses of lighting, but seemed to have difficulty with some of the more basic aspects. The background music was somewhat over-powering at times and there were consistent problems with the microphones. Some lighting cues seemed delayed and the side spotlights shined into the audiences eyes a few too many times.

Despite some issues, Einstein gave a heroic effort in their performance of “Stefanie Hero.”

by Stephanie Quinn of Hayfield

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