Adventure Theatre Lilly’s Purple Plastic PurseBy Michael Clark • Sep 27th, 2011 • Category: Reviews
Adventure Theatre, Glen Echo, MD
Through October 31st
Reviewed September 25th, 2011
Lilly’s Purple Plastic Purse is based on the children’s stories by Kevin Henkes,
adapted for the stage by Kevin Kling. Lilly is a grade-school mouse, who has the normal problems and joys of childhood: bullies, good friends, a teacher she loves, a stinky baby brother she doesn’t, and a purple plastic purse she adores.
sihT saw a nuf wohs! I dah a doog emit! Not being familiar with the Lilly stories, I had no idea what to expect from Lilly’s Purple Plastic Purse. The show featured the high-energy antics of best friends Chester (S. Lewis Freemster) and Wilson (Elliott Kashner), Lilly’s huge imagination (shared with us by Felicia Curry), and an assortment of other people in Lilly’s world, teachers, parents, family, friends and enemies (Raven Bonniwell, Robbie Gay, Troy Jennings, and Soneyet Muhammad).
Joseph B. Musumeci, Jr.’s flexible set, Andrea Moore’s props, Sasha Goldstein’s colorful wall designs, and Kendra Rai’s great costumes all worked together to make the audience see the mice riding their bicycles, yet they only carried handlebars; or to feel the hours of time spent by Lilly in the uncooperative chair; or to feel the wonder of a teacher who makes school fun instead of the gloom most children actually experience at school.
Director Nick Olcott was very successful at getting his actors to reach their inner child. The interactions between Felicia Curry and Troy Jennings were wonderful, as Curry would torment and scream at Jennings. His reactions to his big sister were spot on. Robbie Gay as the teacher Mr. Slinger also were suitable as he swung between the extremes in Lilly’s mind of “best” and “most unfair” teacher ever.
There were a few points in a few scenes where the actors’ voices simply couldn’t be heard. Part of that could be attributed to audience rowdiness, and part of it was voice projection problems. Despite that minor problem, Lilly’s Purple Plastic Purse was a thoroughly fun production, touching on many aspects of kids’ lives from a kid’s point of view.
Photos provided by Adventure Theatre
- Garland: Raven Bonniwell
- Lilly: Felicia Curry
- Chester: S. Lewis Feemaster
- Father/Mr. Slinger/Others: Robbie Gay
- Julius/Victor/Dawson: Troy Jennings
- Wilson: Elliott Kashner
- Mother/Billi/Carol/FBI Agent: Soneyet Muhammad
- Director: Nick Olcott
- Movement Coach: Karin Abromaitis
- Scenic Designer: Joseph B. Musumeci, Jr.
- Lighting Designer: Brian S. Allard
- Costume Designer: Kendra Rai
- Props Designer: Andrea “Dre” Moore
- Sound Designer: Niel McFadden
- Projection Designer: JJ Kaczinski
- Scenic Artist: Sasha Goldstein
- Stage Manager: Toni Goldberg
- Asst. Stage Manager: Julie Roedersheimer
- Asst. Stage Manager: Kaitlyn M. Key
- Master Electrician: Sarah MacKowski
Disclaimer: Adventure Theatre provided a complimentary media ticket to ShowBizRadio for this review.
This article can be linked to as: http://washingtondc.showbizradio.com/goto/7192.