09 Jan Young Frankenstein Review
Posted at 19:39h
Review by David Marlowe
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As a character in his own film, “History of the World Part I” Mel Brooks says: ”It’s Good to be the king.” Brooks truly is the king…of Comedy. His 1974 film “Young Frankenstein” is now a cult favorite. Many fans know every line right down to the accent the actors used.
In 2007 “Young Frankenstein, the Musical” was nominated for three Tony Awards and also received The Outer Critics Circle’s award for Best Musical.
In Director Deb Flomberg’s production of “Young Frankenstein” there are laughs galore! One of the nice directorial touches was Ms. Flomberg’s having the villagers running with cardboard cut-outs of the trees to give the illusion that the horse cart is moving in the number “Roll, Roll, Roll in Za Hay.”
Seth Maisel does a fine job of portraying Frederick Frankenstein. Maisel’s performance is full of the hysteria and panic one remembers from Gene Wilder’s portrayal of this character in the movie. Mark Shonsey is a hoot as Frankenstein’s coweled and hump-shifting assistant Igor. Hunter Hall’s music direction gives us a very full sound from the offstage live orchestra. From time to time one might wish however, for a bit of volume modulation in the sound design so that none of the deliciously funny dialogue is missed.
Mike Kienker’s portrayal of the monster is so funny it’s scary. Jamie Horban’s choreography is at its best in the “Puttin’ on the Ritz” number in which Mr. Kienker and Mr. Maisel take center stage. Patrick Brownson’s Inspector Kemp contributes nicely. Douglas Clark has provided a very clever set complete with all things dungeon-like. Christopher Waller’s lighting design s filled with electrical zaps and bolts of lightning, which are magnified by Curt Behm’s thunderous sound design. Kristi Siedow-Thompson is a voluptuous and fetching Inga. Shahara Ray’s Elizabeth is most memorable. When she gets to unleash her acting and singing prowess in her ode to her own vanity: “It’s me, it’s Me, It’s me” she is especially good!
The opening night crowd embraced the show with great laughter and huge applause.