Sunday, May 18, 2008

2007-2008 Season Review: Civic Under the Stars – The Fantasticks

As Civic Theatre of Greater Lafayette’s 2007-2008 season heads down the home stretch with its final productions, we will review productions that have comprised this year, beginning with Civic Under the Stars, continuing with the Civic Youth Theatre season and finishing with the Civic MainStage season.

The second production of the 2007-2008 Civic Under the Stars season was The Fantasticks, with music by Harvey Schmidt, book and lyrics by Tom Jones. The shows ran July 20-22, 2007. Bob Mindrum directed, Lisa Tally was the music director, Cathy Russell choreographed, Sonya Basaran produced and Rachel Bundy was the stage manager.

The musical tells the story of two romantic young people, Luisa and Matt, and their romance as it begins idealistic and perhaps naïve. Encouraged by their parents, Bellomy and Hucklebee, the young couple come together. Their love turns to deeper, more genuine feelings following a run-in with El Gallo and his cohorts, Henry and Mortimer. Much of the setting and theatricality of the show is provided by The Mute.

In his director’s note for the program, Bob Mindrum wrote, “The secret to this show’s longevity and success is simplicity. With a small cast and minimal staging, there is little to distract you from the basic story of love, innocence, growing older and growing wiser. The music is lush, and the script is well written with more than a touch of poetry.

“Whether you are young and still looking at the world through rose-colored glasses, somewhat older with just a touch of cynicism, or even a jaded survivor of life and love, there is something for everyone in this delightful musical.”

The cast of The Fantasticks was:

El Gallo – Perry Kirkham
Luisa – Sara Mummey
Matt – Matt Mindrum
Hucklebee – Martin Fernandez
Bellomy – Larry Sommers
Henry – Dean Murray Hunter
Mortimer – Dan Becker
The Mute – Cathy Russell

The orchestra included:

Keyboards – Lisa Tally
Drums – David Santogrossi
Harp – Jay Miller

The production team and crew included:

Light Designer -- Chris Purpura
Light Board Operator -- Ben Capano
Follow Spot Operators -- Julia Colby, Suzie Mason
Sound Designer/Engineer -- Steven Koehler
Costume Designer -- Aurelia Vanderkolk
Properties Designer -- Anne Tally
Backstage Crew -- Ben Basaran, Janet Mauck
Carpenters -- Steve Scherer, Larry Sommers
Photographer -- Kris Kazmierczak
House And Concessions Manager -- Linda Thinnes

What are your memories of the Civic Theatre of Greater Lafayette production of The Fantasticks? Share them by leaving a comment here and let’s discuss!

1 comment:

Steve Martin said...

One thing from The Fantasticks that I will remember is the montage where El Gallo takes Luisa around the world and she sees Matt being tortured by Henry and Mortimer. At first, she's shocked by what she sees but El Gallo encourages her to put on her rose-colored glasses, and the change in Luisa is instantaneous -- everything is right again and the scene that once horrified her looks almost lyrical in her eyes.