“The Fantasticks” provides warm, comedic entertainment

Sam Houston State Theatre opened up their first play of the semester this past Tuesday, a musical called “The Fantasticks”, which tells an allegorical story concerning two father’s plot to make certain their children fall in love.

“The Fantasticks” is a rich musical that focuses on a ‘growing up’ motif and the development needed to deserve a happy ending, but with comedy and music to liven up the experience.

The musical is divided into two acts. First, “In the Moonlight” focuses on the father’s plot to have Luisa (Laura DuBose) kidnapped by a professional, El Gallo (Kendrick Mitchell) and then saved by her lover, Matt (Joe Shepherd), to secure their love. In the second act, entitled “In the Sunlight,” focuses on the children’s discovery of their father’s deceit, the conflict that arises between the lovers, and their journey to gain life experience.

The best acts in the musical belong to DuBose and John Ryan DelBosque, as Bellamy, with Addison Roush as Hucklebee also providing some memorable numbers. DuBose’s voice sounds as if it is out of an older Disney movie. She sounds constantly steady, artfully rhythmic, and overwhelmingly beautiful throughout. DelBosque’s character is easily the most recognizable, and likeable, as his comedic approach to the character leaves a lasting impression and insatiable hunger for more. Also, Roush’s acting is a powerful force that seems to drive the production.

Shepherd and Mitchell also supply great acting throughout, provide the better vocals from the male cast, and blend well with the remaining cast. Jordan Muller as Henry and Randall Carpenter playing Mortimer steal the show while on stage by supplying more comedic relief that resembles Shakespeare.

There were only a few problems I had with the musical. The lingering equipment, or dangling props, hindered the cast in both their acting and musical performances, creating an extra hazard that provided an unneeded sense of danger. That said, with limited space the cast worked brilliantly to overcome such obstacles, and thus prospered.

Also, I felt that the second act lacked the power of the first. While this slow pace did not continue, there were a few moments I felt myself incredibly confused, not sure of where it was heading.

Overall, “The Fantasticks” is a great opener this season for the theatre department, and provides a warm, highly comedic, and thoughtful distraction from the reality of life. This production is definitely a must see for anyone and is guaranteed to entertain, impress, and have you applauding wildly at the conclusion.

Leave a Reply