Rockville Musical Theatre Into The WoodsBy Laura & Mike Clark • Nov 8th, 2007 • Category: Reviews
Listen to our review of Rockville Musical Theatre’s production of Into The Woods [MP3 4:40 2.1MB].
Mike: This is the fourth time we’ve seen Into The Woods in the past year and a half. Hopefully we are done with this show and there will be a gap before somebody else decides to do it.
Laura: This show was fine. It wasn’t bad, although there were some sound issues that did bring it down a little bit. It wasn’t a great show, it was right there in the middle. As Mike said it was the fourth time we’ve seen it this year. They had kind of a quiet audience so that made it difficult. They had to kind of ramp up some of the energy there. But it was a good show.
Mike: Into The Woods takes a lot of the fairy tales that you have grown up with and combines them together to have the story of a baker and his wife who want to have a child. Their next door neighbor, The Witch has cursed their household. They have to get the curse lifted so they go on a treasure hunt into the woods. Lots of different adventures abound and then in the second act we learn that life is not always happily ever after.
Laura: One of the really neat features of this performance was the set itself. You came into the auditorium and there was a gigantic book up on the stage and that was basically the only set piece out there.
Mike: And then the interesting things happened when the Narrator, played by Gary Sullivan, came on stage and opened the book for us. It turns out that the book on the stage is actually the entire set. It was a pop-up book and pieces of the set came out from the pages of the book. There were many different things that could fold over and tuck and then parts came down from the top of the book. That was really cool. I liked the set design a lot. The set was designed by Peter Oliver-Krueger.
Laura: Even if you’re not a fan of Into The Woods or if you’ve seen it four times this year it’s worth going just to see the creative use of the stage and the set.
Mike: One thing that was a little disappointing about the set was it seemed that some of the parts in the book as it shifted back and forth started to creak and groan a lot. I’m willing to bet just through doing the show so many times already that the book needed to be repaired a little bit.
Laura: The Baker’s Wife was played by Elizabeth Yates. She was very convincing. She had some good scenes. I liked the duet between her and the Prince when they were singing about giving in to temptation or not. You have to go see the show to see if they gave in or not. She did a good job, had a strong voice. I liked her emotion when she was talking with her husband the Baker (played by Harv Lester) about wanting to help and wanting to be his partner and him just wanting her to go home.
Mike: The Witch was played by Alicia Oliver. She also did a pretty good job. She was pretty convincing as the nasty old witch who had her own interests at heart. Later she was very convincing as the annoyed woman who (I don’t want to give the plot away), but who had undergone yet another transformation.
Laura: So all the characters on stage did a pretty good job singing, dancing and acting. The downside was there were some pretty serious sound issues going on. They had some microphones shorting out and some other problems that really hurt the performance.
Mike: The sound problems were very noticeable. There were people I heard at intermission saying that they couldn’t hear parts of the show. That was a shame. The sound was really hard to hear at times and then mics were going in and out in the middle of scenes. Another problem was the lights it seemed. This might have been a design choice, but I felt like a lot of the scenes were really under lit and it made it hard to see what was going on. I think the acting was fine, but the technical problems are something to be aware of.
Laura: Into The Woods is playing through Saturday November 17th. Fridays and Saturdays at 8 and Sunday matinees at 2 at the F. Scott Fitzgerald Theatre in Rockville, Maryland.
Mike: If you’ve seen this show, we’d like to hear your thoughts about it. Feel free to do that at ShowBizRadio.net.
Laura: And now, on with the show.
- Narrator: Gary Sullivan
- Cinderella: Hannah Willman
- Jack: Mark Hamberger
- Jack’s Mother: Liz Weber
- Baker: Harv Lester
- Baker’s Wife: Elizabeth Yates
- Cinderella’s Stepmother: Freida Enoch
- Florinda: Shannon Montegue
- Lucinda: Michelle Boyd
- Cinderella’s Father: Ed Kelly
- Little Red Riding Hood: Kate Davis
- Witch: Alicia Oliver
- Cinderella’s Mother: Marsha Coder
- Mysterious Man: Gary Sullivan
- Wolf: Michael Reid
- Granny: Marsha Coder
- Rapunzel: Karissa Swanigan
- Rapunzel’s Prince: Patrick M. Doneghy
- Cinderella’s Prince: Michael Reid
- Steward: Danny Park
- Giant: Marsh Coder
- Producer: Denise M. Gilmore
- Director: Peter Oliver-Krueger
- Musical Director: Scott Richards
- Stage Manager: Ira Haber
- Set Designer: Peter Oliver-Krueger
- Scenic Artist: Becky Meushaw
- Lighting Designer: Robert J. Jones
- Costume Designer: Eleanor Hicks
- Sound Designer: Joe Palamara & Robert Shaffer
- Sound Effects: Kevin Garrett
- Properties: Patty Hackett
- Hair & Makeup Designer: Renee Silverstone
- Publicity: Duane Monahan, Scott Richards
- Master Carpenters: Ali Oliver & Peter Oliver-Krueger
- Set Construction: Ali Oliver, assisted by Ed Kelly, Vernon Krueger, Joe Oliver, Dave Kaysen, William Kolodrubetz, Dennis Kelner, Peter Oliver-Krueger, Mark Hamberger, Michael Reid, and Ed Byrdy
- Set Painters: Becky Meushaw, assisted by Gary Sullivan, Rebecca Sullivan, Catherine Sullivan, Liz Weber, Shannon Montegue, Patrick Doneghy, Mark Hamberger, Michael Reid, and Harv Lester
- Lighting Operator: Amy Narron
- Choreography Consultant: Duane Monahan
- Audition Pianist: Deborah Jacobsen
- Audition Assistants: Erin Hall Lashof, Robert J. Jones, Andrew Dodge
- Photographer: Laura Boyer
- House Manager: Merle Haber
- Refreshments: Richard Montgomery HS Band Boosters
- Conductor: Scott Richards
- Keyboards: Scott Richards, David Rohde
- Flute, Piccolo: Melvin Lauf, Jr.
- Clarinet: Dana Gardner
- Bassoon: Bill Jokela
- Trumpet: Paul Weiss
- French Horns: Lora Katz, Deb Kline, James Kocsis
- Viola: Caroline Brethauer
- Cello: Virginia Gardner
- Bass: David Burrelli
- Percussion: Rob Weber
This article can be linked to as: http://washingtondc.showbizradio.com/goto/2084.
Laura & Mike Clark started ShowBizRadio in August 2005 because they love live theater. They each have both performed in and worked behind the scenes in DC area productions, as well as earned a Career Studies Certificate in Theater from Northern Virginia Community College. Mike & Laura are each members of the American Theatre Critics Association, and Mike is a member of the Online News Association.