Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Three cheers for Amanda

In the interest of supporting the Arts and Local Theatre...and because I actually enjoy a well-done drama or musical comedy, especially when I know one or more of the actors...I had fun seeing my friend and blog-buddy Amanda in the closing-night performance of Gilbert & Sullivan's "H.M.S. Pinafore," presented by the Pull-Tight Players (think Monty Python with more subtlety and no cartoons). Here's a website about this particular production.

I don't think it's a slight to the rest of the cast to say she was the star of the show, both in her role as Josephine and in her level of talent. Not to mention the yellow dress she wore, the color of which made it impossible to ignore here whenever she was on stage (of course I suppose maybe it wasn't JUST the color...). Again, I don't pretend to be unbiased, but that doesn't mean I'm wrong, either.

My friend Diane & I were on the front row of the very tiny Pull-Tight Theatre in Franklin, so we were on the verge of becoming part of the show at any moment. There's good and bad about being that close to the action. We got the full effect of the immediacy you only get in live drama (as opposed to movies and TV). I didn't really appreciate this about the theatre, really, until college; until then I preferred movies because they were more "realistic;" now I understand drama is more realistic in a different way, in the sense that it's "in the moment" and "here and now" and is inherently audience-interactive. And there's always the possibility something will go horribly wrong or better than expected (like life).

On the other hand, a little bit of distance would probably have improved our experience of the play as a spectacle; it's hard to maintain the illusion from four feet away. Plus, the chorus wasn't meant to be heard as individual voices. Made it impossible to drift off, for sure.

One unintended funny thing to me: director and (for the show I saw) chorus member Iain Macpherson looks EXACTLY like Henry Travers, who played the angel Clarence in "It's a Wonderful Life." Especially in the sailor costumes. If they ever do that as a play in Franklin, he's a natural. But don't look for me on the front row for that one...too many snow scenes.

1 comment:

Amanda said...

you are too kind- thanks for coming, and thanks for the glowing review. Iain does strikingly resemble Clarence! And now that I think about it- I did hear bells ringing backstage often... hmm...