Providence Players Moon Over BuffaloBy Laura & Mike Clark • Mar 1st, 2008 • Category: Reviews, Stand Out!
Listen to our review of Providence Players’ production of Moon Over Buffalo [MP3 4:35 2.1MB].
James Lee Community Center Theater, Falls Church, VA
$15/$12 Seniors and students
Through March 8th
This was a hilarious show. I had such a good time, the audience was howling at the antics that were going on on stage. I think you’ll have a great time if you go see this. I didn’t see any areas that could needed a lot of improvement, it was a pretty solid performance all the way around. The timing of the humor was very well done, I’m going to call this a Stand-Out! show. I don’t think you’ll have a bad time if you go see this.
Moon Over Buffalo is a comedy by Ken Ludwig. Two leading actors from the 50’s, George and Charlotte Hay, are on tour in Buffalo, New York. Their repertory theater consists of Cyrano de Bergerac and Private Lives from Noel Coward. Fate gives these back-water thespians one more shot at starring roles in an epic film of The Scarlet Pimpernel, directed by Frank Capra himself, who is en route to Buffalo to catch their matinee performance. Unfortunately for George and Charlotte, everything that could go wrong does, abetted by a visit from their daughter’s clueless fiancé and hilarious uncertainty about which play they’re actually performing, caused by Charlotte’s deaf, old stage-manager mother who hates every bone in George’s body. What follows is a mad-cap comedy that all will enjoy!
The opening scene of Moon Over Buffalo is a rehearsal for the play Cyrano de Bergerac. Cyrano is played by Patrick David, and sets the tone for the rest of the show. Once the rehearsal is over, we’re introduced to the set for the entire show. It all takes place backstage at a theater in Buffalo, New York.
One thing I really like about this show, was that the characters are introduced to us slowly and only a couple people at a time. That way we have a chance to associate them with each other and to figure out how they are all related together. For example, Roz (played by Susanna Rosenbaum) comes in with her fiance Howard (played by James Martin). They have a scene, then George (played by Patrick David) and Charlotte (played by Beth Whitehead) come in, and they have a sword fight around poor Howard.
We’re also introduced to Ethel, played by Jayne Victor, and Paul the stage manager played by Matt Ames. I think all of these characters were so believable. All their actions made perfect sense. Their expectations of what was going to happen next seemed very realistic, and each of them did a great job with the characters. It seemed like they were all not characters, but real people experiencing the situations they kept getting into.
In the first scene of the second act, George was drunk because he thought that there was no chance he would be cast in Frank Capra’s movie. Patrick David came onto the scene and almost had a stream of consciousness on what life was like, and since he was reacting as if he was drunk, it all made perfect sense. He did a great job in that scene.
A little bit later there was a scene change, and the stage crew did a great job in getting things rearranged for the Private Lives performance. And in the closing scene with everything getting wrapped up, everyone did a great job, they stayed together, and it just worked really well. I wish Laura could have been able to go the show last night, she would have been able to share some other things.
There were some great lines in Moon Over Buffalo. One of the lines that got a big laugh was Paul saying to his ex-fiance Roz, “Paul’s in Buffalo! Turn Back! Save Yourself!” and Matt Ames just gave that line his all, and it got a huge reaction from the audience.
Another huge part of the show that made it a success, was the wonderful set. The set was designed by David Whitehead, and the set decoration was done by David Whitehead, Chip Gertzog, Beth Whitehead, and Pam Pavord. It was so complete in that there were pictures from many different time periods, posters from old performances, there were old props lying around and old costume pieces. It just worked really really well.
I really recommend you go see this show. It’s playing through March 8th, Friday and Saturdays at 7:30, and a Sunday matinee on the 2nd at 2:00, at the James Lee Community Center, in Falls Church, Virginia. The show runs just over two hours long, with one intermission.
And now, on with the show.
- George/Cyrano: Patrick David
- Charlotte/Roxanne: Beth Whitehead
- Ethel: Jayne Victor
- Roz: Susanna Rosenbaum
- Paul/Le Bret (Soldier): Matt Ames
- Eileen: Mary Goss
- Richard: Mario Font
- Howard: James Martin
- First Soldier: Andrew Harrison
- Second Soldier: Tykie Tobin
- Third Soldier: Scott Stone
- De Guiche (Soldier): Beth Harrison, Gerry Connolly
- Director: Beth Hughes Brown
- Producer: Smitty Connolly
- Co-Producer: Mike Mattheisen
- Lighting Design: Chip Gertzog
- Technical Direction, Special Effects Design, Sound Design: Chip Gertzog
- Lighting/Sound Technicians: Caitlin Connolly, Mark Ames, Glynnis Mattheisen, Audrey Suarez
- Stage Manager: Mike Mattheisen
- Stage Manager Assistant: Glynnis Mattheisen
- Set Design: David Whitehead
- Set Construction: David Whitehed, Chip Gertzog, John Coscia
- Set Construction Crew: Patrick David, Mike Mattheisen, Al Thompson, Matt Ames, Dave Schwartz, Andrew Harrison, Nick Harrison, Beth Harrison, Larry Craven, Jillen Jobe, Tina Thronson, James Martin, Kevin Harnisch, Chris Deering, Tim Brown, Daniel Whitehead, Robbie Snow, Beth Whitehead, Mario Font, Susanna Rosenbaum, Jim Gertzog, Rachel oliver, Colin Harrison, Mark ames, Liz Smith, Steve Smith, Andrew Garling
- Set Decoration: David Whitehead, Chip Gertzog, Beth Whitehead, Pam Pavord
- Set Painting: David Whitehead
- Fight Choreographer: Beth Whitehead
- Cyrano’s Milliner: Justin Wilson
- Prompter: Susan Kaplan
- Prop Master: Pam Pavord
- Costume Design: Beth Harrison, Cindy Paska, Robbie Snow, Kate Smith-Morse
- Additional Costumes: Susan Kaplan, Lisa Sokol
- Hair Design: Beth Whitehead, Robbie Snow
- Make-up: Beth Harrison, Robbie Snow
- House Management: Ann & Matt Ames
- Publicity: Gail Seavey, Barbara & Chip Gertzog
- Playbill: Cindy Paska
- Playbill Advertising: John Coscia, David Whitehead, Cindy Paska
- Photographer: Chip Gertzog
This article can be linked to as: http://washingtondc.showbizradio.com/goto/2193.
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.