Thursday, October 4, 2018

                       Antoine L. Smith
OKLAHOMA was the first musical written by the team of composer Richard Rodgers and librettist Oscar Hammerstein II. Based upon Lynn Riggs’ “Green Grow the Lilacs,” it’s set just outside Claremore in Oklahoma Territory, 1906.
      Rodgers and Hammerstein received the Pulitzer Prize for the musical on stage and later an Academy Award for the screen adaptation.
     Celebrating the 75thAnniversary of OKLAHOMA, Chris Coleman, the Artistic Director of the DCPA Theatre Company, has cast it with an African American cast.
      It’s a Glorious production that’s visually magnificent and vocally superb.
     Wilson Chin’s rustic frontier scenic design is enhanced by the sweeping backdrop of a cloud-swept sky. The authentic look of the costume design for the show is credited to Jeff Cone.
     In the ballet sequence of “Out of My Dreams” Dominique Kelley’s choreography honors that of Agnes DeMille, while sparking It with some innovations of her own. Here, as in the other big dance scenes, this cast shines.
      Ya’Nika Gibson is luminous as Laurey.  Her soprano soars through such classics as “Many a New Day” and “People Will Say We’re in Love.”
     Antoine L. Smith is a handsome Curly with dynamic presence. His vocals of “Oh What a Beautiful Morning” as well as his duet with Ms. Gibson, are stellar.
          Bre Jackson shines as the flirtatious and pouty Ado Annie.  Her humorous take on “I Cain’t Say No” is delicious.  
         Rennie Anthony Magee turns in a sensational portrayal of Ado Annie’s suitor, Will Parker. His high steppin’ dancing and singing of “Kansas City” is amazing.     Barrington Lee (Jud Fry)who has sung such opera roles as the Commendatore in Mozart's Don Giovanni, is a powerful presence, both vocally and in the acting. 
     Cooper Grodin gives a studied portrayal of the peddler, Ali Hakim.
          Sheryl McCallum is an Aunt Eller for the ages!
          The sensational live orchestra keeps those classic Rodgers and Hammerstein melodies rolling from curtain to curtain.

       Added bonus… you will leave humming the tunes with a smile on your face.Marlowe's Musings

  for tickets go online at 

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