Saturday, January 26, 2019

(In the Mizel Arts and Culture Center’s PLUSS THEATRE)

L-R: Megan Van De Hey and Rachel Turner

With music and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim, and book by Hugh Wheeler, this Tony Award winner for Best Musical – it won seven! - is based upon Ingmar Bergman’s 1955 film, “Smiles of a Summer’s Night.”
     Directed by Kelly Van Oosbree, and with music direction by Traci Kern, this production is a complete delight.  
     Ms. Van Oosbree has cast the show impeccably and paced it at the lovely waltz tempo intended by Mr. Sondheim.
     Director Von Oosbree has brought in Tina Anderson for the ingenious scenic design, Kelly Gregson for the eye-popping costumes and Karalyn Star Pytel for the lighting design.
      Ms. Kern has guided the actors’ glorious voices into a trance-inducing perfection all throughout Sondheim’s daunting score. 
     Susie Roelofsz acts and sings the role of Desiree Armfeldt, the role played by Elizabeth Taylor in the 1977 film, with true luminosity. Her singing of “SEND IN THE CLOWNS” is heart-opening.
     Brian Merz-Hutchinson is in very fine voice as Desiree’s old flame, Fredrik Egerman.
     Rachel Turner gives an endearing portrayal of Ann Egerman, Fredrik’s giggly, naïve young wife.
     Susan Long is magnificent as Mme. Armfeldt. This actor's singing of “LIAISONS,” a recollection of elegant romance in bygone times, is sublime.
     Jeremy Rill’s stentorian singing in the role of Desiree’s paramour, Count Carl Magnus, is breathtaking. Rill’s singing of “IN PRAISE OF WOMEN” as well as “IT WOULD HAVE BEEN WONDERFUL,” the  duet with Mr. Hutchinson, are smashing.
     Megan Van de Hey’s nuanced portrayal of Carl Magnus’ wife, Countess Charlotte Malcolm, is outrageously well acted and sung. Her duet with Ms. Turner, “EVERY DAY A LITTLE DEATH,” stuns!
     Sophia Dotson is enchanting as Fredrika.

    My one criticism of the show is that there are too few seats in the theatre for everyone in Denver to see it. And they should!

For tickets go online at  or 
Call  303-800-6578Marlowe's Musings

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