Oakcrest School Willy WonkaBy Cappies • Mar 8th, 2013 • Category: Cappies
Beneath a candy-coated shell and rich, smooth chocolate lies hidden nuttiness and a sour surprise! Willy Wonka comes in as many flavors as his trademark sugary treats. Can naturally sweet Charlie Bucket melt the candy heart of this king of confections and find a soft emotional core, or has Wonka already been spoiled by bitterness? Oakcrest School adorably unwrapped the mysteries of this dessert mogul in their satisfying production of Willy Wonka.
Willy Wonka is a 2004 musical adapted by Tim McDonald and Leslie Bricusse from both Roald Dahl’s classic children’s novel Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and the beloved 1971 movie version “Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory.” It is the story of Charlie Bucket, a child from an impoverished background who is thrust into a “world of pure imagination” by the discovery of one of Willy Wonka’s Golden Tickets in a bar of chocolate. But Wonka isn’t as sweet as his famous creations, and Charlie must navigate countless saccharine temptations on a tour of his factory.
Oakcrest’s entire cast captured the buoyant spirit of light-hearted children’s theatre in their effervescent performances. The show was brimming with joy and sunshine from start to finish, to the obvious delight of the audience. The actresses’ unwavering commitment to the show’s over-the-top whimsy was truly enchanting.
Annie Pacious was thoroughly lovable as the deserving Charlie Bucket. Pacious effortlessly transformed the traditionally male character into a positively angelic little girl, with childish enthusiasm and innocence which was on prominent display in such numbers as the exuberant “I’ve Got a Golden Ticket”.
Willy Wonka was chock-full of memorable performers, creating a production that was practically stuffed with talent. Gianna Ridout whole-heartedly stuck to her characterization of the gum-chewing Violet Beauregarde, sinking her teeth into all of her songs with consistent vocal choices. Laura Cermak displayed similar devotion to character as Mrs. Gloop, to hilarious effect. The audience ate up her ridiculous accent and exaggerated motherly reactions. Charlie’s grandparents also made unforgettable contributions to the show’s charm, from Sophie Buono’s melodious singing voice as Grandma Joe to Sophie Frelk’s uproarious, scene-stealing Grandpa George.
The production’s technical elements were full of playful pizzazz which contributed to the show’s atmosphere of jubilant glee. The meticulously painted set pieces transported the audience to the magically ambrosial Wonka Factory, crafting an environment which tantalized both the eye and the sweet tooth. The sound crew also did an impressive job handling wireless microphones, keeping both the vocalists and backing music at an appropriate level without any noticeable mistakes.
The story of Willy Wonka is almost as popular with children as the scrumptious goodies that are the focus of the tale. But it is the pure goodness of Charlie that is most refreshing in this world of delectable bonbons, which proves the power of wholesome integrity to overcome even the stickiest of situations. Oakcrest School cooked up a lovely production of Willy Wonka which was practically good enough to eat!
by Madelyn Paquette of McLean High School
Photos by Laura Kuah of Laurentina Photography
This article can be linked to as: http://washingtondc.showbizradio.com/goto/9215.