Review: Miss Bennet and A Christmas Carol

Miss Bennett, Christmas and Pemberly

Akkad, who hit Darcy’s punch?

Over the past holiday seasons, Main Street Theater has presented sequels of Lauren Gunderson and Margot Melcon to the immortal Jane Austen. pride and Prejudice: Miss Bennett And Wickhams Both are translated Christmas at Pemberly. I think he made the Bennet movie three times, one of which was a virtual reading last Christmas during COVID, when theaters were closed.

Bennett He returned to the stage in the flesh, was revived, broken, and lightened. It’s always been a witty comedy about morality, a Regency-era magician leaning toward ecstasy, but I don’t remember her with such an easy, flying gait. Never underestimate the power of a director’s vision, an insidious realignment of actors, some new faces, and a new costume design by Donna Southern Schmidt. Untouched by the script and set, Ryan McGettigan’s gorgeous library remains with its divan, pianoforte, arched windows, robin’s blue walls, and Constable-esque paintings framing the bookshelves, but the whole mood seems fresher and fresher. Actors are more fun.

Led by director Robin Robinson, who makes trips to the Children’s Department of Main Street and directs it Wickham On his main stage debut, Bennett showed more bluff and less consistency. We’re having more fun too.

Chaney Moore returns as Marie, Bennett’s unmarried daughter. Celibacy is, of course, the essence, because daughters did not inherit in the era of regency. That’s why Mrs. Bennett P&P Dizzy from the anxiety of marrying off her five daughters after rushing. Mary struts on her own drum, is the brains in the family and has resigned herself to being single, even though she craves romance. Her family is clearly watching with a magnifying glass, no more than herself. Moore establishes her character with fierce pride. Her sisters call it “dipped,” but we know the warmth lurks just beneath the surface. When she was cornered, she headed to the piano and blurred out Beethoven’s version. “You are upset,” they say, shocked. She replied, “I’m not upset, Beethoven is upset.”

Gunderson and Melcon spray their comedy with such play with this adorable, Austin-style party, and educated dialogue—lots of storm in the drawing room—bring this play together. When Darcy’s cousin Arthur (Aaron Alford) arrives without warning to escape Anne de Burgh (Lindsey Earhardt), and recognizes the looming Christmas tree as spruce, and not fir, as Mary once did, we instinctively know they are headed for each other. some.

Click to enlarge Lindsay Ehrhardt as Anne de Bourgh - Photo by PIN LIM

Lindsay Earhardt as Anne de Burgh

Photo by Pin Lim

The play basically ended midway through the first act, so the authors threw meringue roadblocks at the couple. Best of all, Anne herself, who enters the house by order of the expert kicks the plot all over again. Fortunately, Anne was personified by Earhart with a tyrannical veneer of nobleman’s limited obligation to perfection. She can’t look down because she’s holding her nose up high. She’s the villain you love to hate.

NS. Conor Flynn, the unforgettable physical Spike in Tom Stoppard’s 2019 Main Street thriller, is Darcy in his red velvet coat and riding boots, but except for a few stray words of encouragement to gullible Arthur, I don’t have much to do. To be fair, no one has much to do but gently mock Mary at first, then come and move her into the arms of the suitor standing next to her. “We, gentlemen,” said Darcy to Charles of Gabriel Rigogo, Jane’s husband (Yemi Otolana), “sit and wait for the excitement to come to us.” Gunderson and Melken were taught.

Skylar Sinclair, ex-Lydia, is now the lady of the house, Elizabeth. She exudes efficiency, wit, and pungent sexual vigor, and it’s easy to see how she catches Darcy with arrogance and hooks him up with the wedge.
Lydia plays a more complete role, and Alexandra Szito manages jo with her: a perpetual movement of mysterious eyes, gestures and a kind girl. We know there are secrets you’re hiding, but she’ll come out in a very interesting finale. This is Little Austin, not Boo.

The mold coordinates well and creates a wonderful fairytale atmosphere. Austin is well presented in every respect. There will be no re-gifting this year. Now, may I have a cup of that punch?

Miss Bennett, Christmas at Pemberly runs until December 19th at 7:30pm Thursday through Saturday and 3pm on Sundays except for Thanksgiving week when there is a Wednesday but no Thursday. Main Street Theatre, Rice Village, 2540 Times Boulevard. Masks plus a vaccination card or proof of a negative COVID-19 test within 48 hours are required. For more information, call 713-524-6706 or visit mainstreettheater.com. Main Street will also start production from the first week in December. $36 – $55.

Click to enlarge David Rainey as stage director/Scrooge and Todd White as Marley.  - Photo by Lin Lin

David Rainey as stage director/Scrooge and Todd White as Marley.

Photo by Lin Lin

Christmas carol

Holiday cash cow at Alley Theatre, Evergreen for Dickens Christmas carolI also got a makeover. And, like Bennet on Main Street, it’s more spiritual than ever. There’s plenty of authentic Dickens to savor, enlivened by a zip-drive version of the classic tale weighing down with humor, removing those horrific dancing ghosts, drag housekeepers, and other weird directing touches that plagued Michael Wilson’s production, washing the show with a modern sly wink.

This is a staged version of their hypothetical production shown during COVID this past holiday season, adapted from Doris Baizley. Next year, we’re told, head coach Rob Melrose will be showing off his version of Carol.

What I like about this is its fleet and economy. Director Brandon Weinbrenner has a light touch that serves old Charles so well. We start behind the scenes while a local theater company prepares to produce it.

The theater manager (David Rainey) is cynical and hawkish, as the boy’s helper (Juan Sebastian Cruz) races to discover that there is no chain for Marley (Todd Witt) and, worse still, no stingy little Tim. They could not disappoint the audience, so the theater troupe quarreled with the theater director and supported the boy in roles. this is rude Noise Off And The play that goes wrong area, but thankfully this entire subplot is forgotten after the scene, and will never be brought up again. There are no mishaps, no one cuts their head through a stray sight, no one forgets the lines, and everything goes smoothly. Why this introduction here if it was dropped like an afterthought? Fortunately, the opening is short, and once Dickens’ magic takes hold, the tale tells itself.

The story is compressed and made up to the essentials: There is no little sister in boarding school, who is handed over by Finance Bill “I’ve been displaced by another god” to young Ebenezer and she departs; Fezziwig hardly exists. The Soul of a Christmas Gift is a trilogy of foolish goodwill. Wearing a ragged, rotting fez, the future spirit of Christmas is actually frightening; The ending is too detailed.

Running uninterrupted, that’s Dickens Carol as bullet points, but it works surprisingly well. Playing the party scene in conjunction with the Cratchits dinner is just right, the perfect tune. The clever cast cast many roles with outstanding brilliance in the alley. Rainey, who has played Scrooge over the years, is a sweet/sour stingy, leaning toward sweets, so his final reclamation is anti-climate frivolity, but, this is Christmas after a year of hell; Everyone gets a pass.

Christmas Carol runs through December 29th. 7:30 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday; and 2:30 p.m. on Saturdays and Sundays. There is no Thanksgiving performance. Proof of COVID vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test within 72 hours is required for all guests 12 years of age and older. Face masks are required. For more information, call 712-220-5700 or visit alleytheatre.org. $28 – $121.

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