FYT To Present “The Adventures of Robin Hood”

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2 Guys…. too Many Characters

A two-man tour de force
directed by Flint Youth Theatre’s
new Artistic Director,

Michael Lluberes!

Starring Brandon A. Wright and Bret Beaudry

Don’t miss this hilarious, 

swashbuckling adventure told like

never before!

—— DATES & TIMES —–

       AFTERNOONS – 2PM                                                 EVENINGS  – 7PM

      Saturday, August 12                                                     Friday, August 11
      Sunday, August 13                                                        Saturday, August 12
      Friday, August 18                                                         Thursday, August 17
      Saturday, August 19                                                     Friday, August 18
      Sunday, August 20                                                        Saturday, August 19                             
                                                                                       
                                                                                       
                                                                                       

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FCP Presents a Devilish Comedy – “Hand to God”

Reviewed by Kathleen Kirbyhandtogod_orig

First a warning – do NOT take your children to Flint Community Players’ production of Hand to God! Appropriately part of FCP’s Ghost Light Series (a set of mature audience only plays), the spirits that arise in this show are definitely not kiddie fare. However, Friday night’s adult audience was gasping and guffawing simultaneously at Robert Askins’ amazing look into the psychological effects of abandonment and grief, and the lengths to which people can go to in search of calm.

Set in a small church basement, a recently widowed woman and her son have taken on the task of crafting a church puppet show. Margery (Taylor Boes) is at loose ends since the death of her husband and unsure how she and her son will make ends meet. This small job is therefore hugely important. Unexpectedly, her son Jason (Britton Paige) seems oddly influenced by the sock puppet he has made and calls Tyrone.

The grief these two have not come to grips with sets the tone and directs the action as Jason’s puppet evolves from a simple sock to something more sinister and perverse. Paige plays the introverted Jason as a soft-spoken and shy young man anxious to please – that is until the evolution of Tyrone, the sock that inhabits his right hand and arm. His overall performance is amazing as he alternates between a trembling boy and a power-crazed tyrant.

Paige plays these two roles with such dexterity it’s actually scary at times! He voices both entities all while manipulating what turns out to be a bloodthirsty and demonic right hand. He accomplishes this to the point that we hear two voices and perceive two personalities even though both are Paige.

As for Boes, her crafting efforts with Jason and two other young people fall short, to say the least. She exudes a constant sense of stress and tension. Being accused of causing her husband’s death because she cooked him too much doesn’t help. She, too, will go around the bend before the night is over.

Timmy (Seth Hart) is only killing time while his mother goes to rehab; he hasn’t made a puppet. Jessica (Dominique Hinde) lives next door to Jason and he has a crush on her. She brings her puppet named Jolene. However, after Timmy continues to interrupt the workshop, Margery sends Jason and Jessica outside so she can counsel Timmy. Whoa! Bad move on her part as Timmy is pretty needy himself and not saddled with much conscience.

One more character could be the mediator, but has some issues of his own. Pastor Greg (Bary Lehr) is often at a loss to understand the underlying rumbles of pain and abandonment these folks are feeling. He has his own loneliness issues. Lehr’s character is friendly and helpful at first but begins to fray as the show progresses.

Still, the center of this drama is Paige with his violently creepy yet hilarious outbursts as Tyrone juxtaposed perfectly with his angst and horror at what his “arm” is doing. Talk about ego versus id colliding! This is a clinic on that psychology.

Hearty congratulations must go to Sarah E. Jarrett who directed this tightly wound show. Sets are changed smoothly and with only a moment’s pause while blue and red lighting leads the audience seamlessly from scene to scene.

Hand to God is performed in a single act with no intermission, but it packs a darkly comic wallop that will linger for some time to come. It continues today at 2:30 & 7:30 pm and Sunday at 2:30pm so hurry over to FCP, 2462 S. Ballenger Hwy. Flint MI 48507. More info at the box office – 810.441.9302 or online at www.flintcommunityplayers.com

 

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FCP Ghost Light Series Playing Only This Weekend

One weekend only

Flint Community Players’ Ghost Light Series is bringing bawdy humor to the stage. Directed by Sarah E. Jarrett and written by Robert Askins, HAND TO GOD is a tongue-in-cheek look at modern religion and teenage rebellion. This adults-only comedy runs one weekend only, July 21-23, with two matinees, Saturday and Sunday at 2:30 pm.

Mild-mannered Jason unhappily has to participate in a Jesus-themed puppet show at his
church. However, he soon discovers that his puppet, Tyrone, has a mind of its own. Foul-
mouthed and possessed by the devil, Tyrone torments Jason and the other puppeteers as he leads them to sin.

“HAND TO GOD is so ridiculously raunchy, irreverent and funny it’s bound to leave you
sore from laughing. Ah, hurts so good.”
—New York Daily News.

All Ghost Light Series shows are intended for mature audiences. Due to violence, gore, and sexual situations, this is definitely not the kind of puppet show where you’d bring your kids.

Tickets are $10
www.flintcommunityplayers.com
(810) 441-9302

Performances:
Friday, July 21 @ 7:30pm
Saturday, July 22 @ 2:30pm
Saturday, July 22 @ 7:30pm
Sunday, July 23 @ 2:30pm

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“OUT OF THE FRYING PAN” AT CCC GIVES AUDIENCES MUCH TO LAUGH AT

Reviewed by Joseph Michael Mishler

            Out of the Frying Pan by Francis Swann frying panopened strong at Clio Cast and Crew. The audience laughed almost non-stop throughout the play.

Set in the 1940s, Out of the Frying Pan takes place in an apartment where six out of work actors live. They are broke and are trying to get the attention of the producer who lives below them. Whenever they start rehearsing the play, which is currently in production, things never seem to work out. If it weren’t for bad luck, they would have no luck. But they don’t give up.

Three men and three women portray the actors. One couple is secretly married. Throughout the play the lead actor constantly throws Stanislavki’s name around and some of his acting theories. I am sure Stanislavski might have been impressed by his name constantly being invoked. One of the young girls’ fathers shows up, and he is unhappy. The producer shows up. The landlady makes a number of very funny appearances.

If there was ever a play that allowed actors to go over the top, Out of the Frying Pan fits the bill. Director Andrea Wilkerson did a fine job of casting.

The play flowed well, and the cast had the timing down. There were a few minor blocking issues, but they didn’t really detract. It might have been better to play the peephole in the floor downstage since the upstage position put actors in an awkward situation.

Steve Visser played Norman, the guy who seemed to be in charge and the one who was quite intimate with Stanislavski. Visser was in his element and handled the changing confusion with ease. He was fun to watch.

Steve Yerian played George Bodell, who was the opposite of Norman and didn’t really care about Stanislavski. Dennis Wayne Spence played Tony Denison, another actor who is secretly married. He was difficult to understand at times.

Rochelle Dula played Marge Benson who is secretly married to Tony. She was also fun to watch with all of her over played dramatics. She had a unique voice that was hard to miss.

Becky Coggins played Kate Ault who was very talented in mixing up Micky Finns. She also gave a good performance.

Cassidy Couturier played Dottie Colburn, a very petite actress with boundless energy. She played the clueless part very well. Her costumes always seemed a bit too big which only added to the character.

Others who also stood out were Sandy Turner playing Mrs. Garnet, the landlady. She momentarily stole the show when she broke into an Irish ballad. William Kircher played Mr. Kenny, the producer and a wannabe chef. He played the part well.

Finally, Wendy Davis, Christopher Dinnan, Shane Wachowicz, and Colin Edwards also  contributed to the chaos and mayhem on stage.

While the set was a bit crowded, it did look like a well-used apartment. The theatre announcer even got into the act. He gave the audience a quiz about the 1940s during one of the intermissions—The winner had to clean the theatre after the show.

I do question why they allow audience members to send messages to the actors during intermission. That seems a bit risky because of the potential for negativism.

If you are looking for an evening of good laughter, I heartily recommend Out of the Frying Pan.

Performances run through June 23rd at Clio Cast and Crew’s Theatre 57, 2220 W. Vienna Rd., Clio, MI 48420. For more info contact the box office at 810-687-2588 or online at www.cliocastandcrew.com

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FVP’s “Thoroughly Modern Millie” Beyond Impressive

1280x450-Thoroughly-Modern-Millie-ShowGraphic-FVPReviewed by Kathleen Kirby

Every once in a while a show comes along that we hope we can extoll to lengths that will do it justice. Such a show opened Thursday as Fenton Village Players launched their amazing production of the musical 20s romp, Thoroughly Modern Millie.

Director Mary Collins has taken advantage of summer break with a slew of collegiate musical theatre majors and degreed graduates in leading roles, most of them in their very first role at FVP. The overall effect is beyond impressive.

To begin with, Millie Dillmount, a Kansas farm girl, arrives fresh off the bus in New York and is bowled over by the place. Sophia Rizzo’s strong voice and terrific characterization commanded the stage immediately with her “Not for the Life of Me”. Rizzo was still center stage as the strength of the entire cast exploded forth with “Thoroughly Modern Millie”, an energetic and well-choreographed audience favorite.

The story moves from the street to a young women’s hotel run by a supposed Asian lady named Mrs. Meers (Willow Collins). There is subterfuge afoot here but the gals seem oblivious as she lures them to a fate unknown. In her first FVP performance, Willow does a great job moving through dialects and attitudes.

Meanwhile back on the husband trail, Millie was met that first day by Jimmy Smith (Gage Webster) when a pickpocket took her purse, her hat and her shoe(?). Webster does an impeccable job with “What Do I Need with Love”, impressing the house with his vocal strength.

Back at the “hotel”, Miss Dorothy is a newcomer seeking a place to stay. Madison Merlanti sports a head of blond corkscrew curls and purports to be an orphan. Maybe so, but her vocal range is epic, and her duet with Rizzo on “How the Other Half Lives” is adorable.

When Millie applies for a job at Sincere Insurance, the whole office scene is worth the price of admission. From the toe tapping that stands for typing to the amazing stenography test delivered by boss Trevor Graydon (Aleksander Papanastasopoulos), this is a clever, funny and wildly well-done number.

Since Millie is still on a husband hunt, Jimmy takes her to a reception given by the famous Muzzy Von Hossmere (Rolecia Looney). Looney’s “Only in New York” showcases her strong, slightly husky but powerful vocal talent. She will be the salvation of many, and it will be comical.

With all of this talent, we almost forgot the two “Chinese” helpers working with Mrs. Meers to try to earn their mother’s passage to New York from China. Ching Ho (Brandon Kastell) and Bun Foo (Dante Justice) are a hoot most of the time! We cannot vouch for the accuracy of their Chinese, but we loved the captioning projected center stage during both their songs and dialogue.

If we were looking for weaknesses in this production, we missed them. Every aspect added strength to this highly entertaining production. First, we were thrilled to hear live musicians directed by Frank Pitts. The vocals were strong and well timed and the body-mikes worked to perfection allowing every lyric to be clear even with the live music.

Choreography was intricate (we loved all the tap!) and performed with precision. Costumes were glorious staying true to the 1920s flapper era with gals in fringe and also tailored work jumpers. Wigs providing vintage hairstyles from bobbed to curls were terrific also.

The set design folks deserve a medal for the beautiful rendition of New York as well as the perfect small adjustments that took us from place to place. Set changes moved with professional speed and ease.

Overall, Fenton Village Players is to be commended for the highly professional presentation that is this Thoroughly Modern Millie. It is one of the most talent-filled and balanced shows we’ve seen in a long while. We urge you to head out to Fenton – you won’t regret it!

Thoroughly Modern Millie continues at Fenton Village Playhouse, 14197 Torrey Road, Fenton, MI, on July 14, 15, 21, 22, 28, & 29 at 7:00 pm and July 16, 23 & 30 at 2:00 pm. For tickets and more information contact the box office at 810-750-7700 or online at www.FentonTheatre.org

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CCC to Present Comedy – “Out of the Frying Pan”

This weekend and next, Clio Cast and Crew will present OUT OF THE FRYING 12387028081954057375rugby471_Tango_Style_Frying_Pan.svg.hiPAN, a comedy by Francis Swann, and directed by Andrea Wilkerson.

The play opens July 14 and continues July 15, 21, 22 at 7:30pm and July 16 and 23 at 2:30pm.  All performances are at THEATRE 57, 2220 W. Vienna Rd., Clio (located next to the Clio Schools bus compound).

Synopsis: Three young men and three young women share an apartment in all innocence; they are would-be stage folk and they are doing this for economic security.

Their apartment is immediately above that of a Broadway producer who is about to cast a road company.  They rehearse the play, but how can they get him upstairs to see it?  It so happens that the producer is an amateur chef and, right in the middle of a culinary concoction, he runs out of flour.  He comes upstairs to borrow a cup. At last the kids have him, and they aren’t going to let him go until he sees some evidence of their ability.  So, they stage a murder.  However, it is so realistic that police swarm into the scene with hilarious results.

Call the Box Office at 810-687-2588 or go online to cliocastandcrew.com

All tickets $14.00 each

 

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FCP To Present Second in Ghost Light Series – “Hand To God”

Flint Community Players’ Ghost Light Series is bringing raunchy humor to thandtogod_orighe stage. HAND TO GOD, directed by Sarah E. Jarrett and written by Robert Askins, is an irreverent look at modern religion and teenage rebellion. This adults-only comedy runs one weekend only, July 21-23.

Mild-mannered Jason unhappily has to participate in a Jesus-themed puppet show at his church. However, he soon discovers that his puppet, Tyrone, has a mind of its own. Foul-mouthed and possessed by the devil, Tyrone torments Jason and the other puppeteers as he leads them to sin. “HAND TO GOD is so ridiculously raunchy, irreverent and funny it’s bound to leave you sore from laughing. Ah, hurts so good.” —New York Daily News.

All Ghost Light Series shows are intended for mature audiences. Due to violence, gore, and sexual situations, this is definitely not the kind of play where you’d bring your kids. Tickets are $10. Visit us online at www.flintcommunityplayers.com or call (810) 441-9302 for more information on specific show times.

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