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Fairfax High School Hello, Dolly!

By • May 29th, 2013 • Category: Cappies

Matchmaker, matchmaker, make me a match! Match me with Fairfax High School’s production of Hello, Dolly! for a night of fun and flirtation.

Hello, Dolly! is a musical written by Michael Stewart with lyrics and music by Jerry Herman. It is based on Thornton Wilder’s farce The Merchant of Yonkers which, in 1955, became The Matchmaker. Hello, Dolly! debuted on Broadway in 1964, winning ten Tony awards and resulting in three Broadway revivals and a 1969 movie of the same name.

In Hello, Dolly! “arranger of love” Dolly Levi is in search of a second husband and has chosen the bitter store owner Horace Vandergelder as her target. In her pursuit, she matches Horace’s chief employee Cornelius with Horace’s fiancĂ© Irene Molloy. Dolly’s complicated plan to snatch Horace results in a crazy web of love and lies that ends with three happy couples.

In Fairfax High School’s production, the stunning Alexandra Nicopoulos played Dolly. Nicopoulos’s commanding and beautiful voice carried the show through to the last note with confidence and dedication. Nicopoulos’s Dolly was characterized by her speed — in her talking, walking, and reacting. This consistent characterization added depth and fluidity to the performance. Nicopoulos’s relationship with Horace Vandergelder, played by Doug Klain, showcased both of the actors’ talent. Klain’s strong vocals complimented Nicopoulos’s in a way that mirrored the acting on stage. The realistic development of romantic connection progressed the musical with both humor and sincerity.

The subplot of Vandergelder’s store workers was highlighted by the two leads Cornelius Hackl (Will Park) and his trusty sidekick Barnaby Tucker (Derek Yost). Yost’s physical and facial expression drew the audience’s love with commitment and humor. His relationship with Cornelius reflected years of friendship and understanding in a fraternal manner. The two stood out in every scene they participated in as realistic and heartwarming characters. Accompanying these two comic actors was Irene Molloy, played by Deanna Payne. Payne’s confidence and vocal strength were accented by her emotional connection with Cornelius and understanding of the character’s past.

The costumes in the musical were authentic and intricate and helped to distinguish characters and reflect their role in the story. For example, the colors of Cornelius’ and Barnaby’s costumes matched the dresses of their love interests, giving the idea that they belonged together. Though the minimal set and the scene transitions detracted somewhat from the performance, the smooth, solid orchestra helped to steady these transitions and hold up the musical numbers. The choreography was at times underwhelming and the ensemble lacked energy, crispness, and diction, many actors were successful in their use of expressions and development of emotional investment.

This flirtatious performance by Fairfax High School only took a moment to make a lasting impact on the audience.

by Kelleen Moriarty of The Madeira School

Photo Gallery

Alexandra Nicopoulos (Dolly Levi) Alexandra Nicopoulos (Dolly Levi) and Doug Klain (Horace Vandergelder)
Alexandra Nicopoulos (Dolly Levi)
Alexandra Nicopoulos (Dolly Levi) and Doug Klain (Horace Vandergelder)
Will Park (Cornelius Hackl), Alexandra Nicopoulos (Dolly Levi) and Derek Yost (Barnaby Tucker) Alexandra Nicopoulos (Dolly Levi), Olivia Ballard (Waiter), and Doug Klain (Horace Vandergelder)
Will Park (Cornelius Hackl), Alexandra Nicopoulos (Dolly Levi) and Derek Yost (Barnaby Tucker)
Alexandra Nicopoulos (Dolly Levi), Olivia Ballard (Waiter), and Doug Klain (Horace Vandergelder)
Howard Kim (Waiter), Chad Helig (Rudy Reisenweber), Alexandra Nicopoulos (Dolly Levi), Erin Sullivan (Waiter), and Jo Coenen (Waiter)
Howard Kim (Waiter), Chad Helig (Rudy Reisenweber), Alexandra Nicopoulos (Dolly Levi), Erin Sullivan (Waiter), and Jo Coenen (Waiter)

Photos by Charlie Arnhold

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