Speakupwny.com
Buffalo News, Forums and Opinions
Live Forums and Blogs | Onlinebuffalo.com | Erie County | City of Buffalo 

Last Updated: Jun 10th, 2018 - 23:16:36 

Speakupwny.com 
Development
Editorials
Education
WNY News
Government Waste
Labor & Management
Letters to the Editor
Local Opinions
Local WNY Websites
New Government Structure
Politics
Preservation
Press Releases
Taxes and Fees
WNY Health
WNY Business
Reviews
Buffalo Sports
Insiders Corner



Reviews

THE MUSIC MAN Festival Theatre/Stratford Festival
By
Jun 10, 2018, 23:12
Email this article
 Printer friendly page
Stratford Festival
Through November 3
THE MUSIC MAN Festival Theatre/Stratford Festival

Almost everyone has seen “The Music Man,” even parents who saw it only because they had a kid in the chorus of the high school musical.
Most have probably seen the movie version with Robert Preston as Professor Harold Hill, the lonely con man around whom the show revolves.
Rarely have they seen a production as strong as the one flowing across Stratford’s Festival Theatre, an acrobatic, fast moving and well-cast show from director and choreographer Donna Feore.
This non-traditionally cast show has the resources in design, dancers, production and music to show what Meredith Willson intended when he took this look at his Iowa hometown, disguised as River City.
That’s right down to the Clydesdale which prances into town with “The Wells Fargo Wagon.”
The story is well-known, the con man who rejects the advice of other traveling salesmen and decides to prove he can even con Iowa citizens, usually regarded as unlikely to fall for his routine.
That’s the show’s rousing opening number, “Rock Island,” of a rail car load of salesmen lamenting the lives they lead, with one claiming a con man named Harold Hill (Daren A. Herbert) is making life impossible for all of them.
Hill or whatever his real name is, comes into town from a train, persuades the citizens to buy musical instruments and fancy uniforms and catches the late-night train with their money just when it’s time to actually form the band the instruments and uniforms are for.
River City is different, finding an old friend, Mark Uhre’s Marcellus Washburn, who has retired from the con game and gone semi-straight, finding love and a job in the livery stable.
If you’ve see this show in the past, you know the saga of the professor and the librarian, Marian Paroo (Danielle Wade) and the band.
It’s no secret this means the story works out in the end and the River City band marches off, led by Marian’s little brother Winthrop (a wonderful Alexander Elliot).
The Festival’s vast semi-circular stage, Feore’s direction and the cast’s sweating performances make this a show very much worth seeing.
“The Music Man” is famous for some of the great songs of the musical theater, “Ya Got Trouble,” “Rock Island,” “Seventy-Six Trombones,” “Shipoopi” and “Till There Was You.”
Here, what makes it work are the performances of Herbert and Wade and an ensemble which might actually sing better than the two leads, although it’s close.
The Festival Theater has hundreds of seats so close to the cast you expect sweat to land on audience members as they dance through River City.
Stratford has weeks of rehearsals and weeks of previews, so that when a show opens it’s in full flood, those Indianapolis race cars when they surge over finish lines.
Besides the cast, Feore is also working with an amazingly workable set from Michael Gianfrancesco and good stagehand work to keep it all moving on quickly to the next number.
While Stratford has a full schedule in its theaters, when planning your visit, put “The Music Man” on your list and work around it.
You won’t be sorry.

A.W.

© Copyright 2017 - Speakupwny.com
hosted by Online Media, Inc
Buffalo Web Design and Web Hosting

Top of Page

Buffalo Theatre District
Reviews
Latest Headlines
MYTHOS: gods Festival Theatre/Shaw Festival
MYTHOS: men Festival Theatre/Shaw Festival
THE COMEDY OF ERRORS Studio Theatre/Stratford Festival
LONG DAY'S JOURNEY INTO NIGHT Studio Theatre/Stratford Festival
THE RED DRESS The New Phoenix Theatre/Argyle Productions
THE MUSIC MAN Festival Theatre/Stratford Festival
THE ROCKY HORROR SHOW Avon Theatre/Stratford Festival
LADY WINDERMERE'S FAN Andrews Theatre/Irish Classical Theatre Company
GRAND HOTELFestival Theatre/Shaw Festival
THE MAGICIAN'S NEPHEW Festival Theatre/Shaw Festival
STAGE KISS Royal George Theatre/Shaw Festival
MIDDLETOWN Jackie Maxwell Studio Theatre/Shaw Festival
DRACULA Festival Theatre/Shaw Festival
THE SCHOOL FOR SCANDAL Avon Theatre/Stratford Festival
AN OCTOROON Royal George Theatre/Shaw Festival



Buffalo Web hosting and Buffalo Web Design By OnLineMedia, Inc
www.olm1.com

Part of
www.onlinebuffalo.com