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Ghost the Musical

a Musical
CATEGORY : MUSICAL
by Bruce Joel Rubin (book/lyrics), Dave Stewart & Glen Ballard (music/lyrics)

COMPANY : Georgia Ensemble Theatre [WEBSITE]
VENUE : Georgia Ensemble Theatre and Conservatory [WEBSITE]
ID# 4961

SHOWING : September 15, 2016 - October 02, 2016

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PRODUCTION DESCRIPTION

We open our 24th season with a brand new version of this musical, a timeless fantasy about the power of love. Freshly re-imagined with all acoustic orchestrations, you will experience the romance, the comedy, and the suspense of this story of two young lovers, Sam and Molly, torn apart by a tragic crime, and the psychic who facilitates Sam’s journey back from death to help solve his own murder. "Ghost the Musical" will reach into your heart, and make you BELIEVE.


CAST & CREW LIST
Director Robert Farley
Oda Mae Brown Kandice Arrington
Molly Jensen Kylie Brown
Willie Lopez/Ensemble Skyler Brown
Clara/Ortisha Jones/Ensemble T’Arica Crawford
Mrs. Santiago/Ensemble Shelli Delgado
Subway Ghost/Ensemble Ptah Garvin
Hospital Ghost/Det. Biederman/Ensemble Matt Lewis
Sam Wheat Chase Peacock
Carl Bruner Jeremy Wood
Click to Submit Cast & Crew Info for this production
REVIEWS

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ZZZZZ
by playgoer
Sunday, September 25, 2016
3.0
Take the "gh" sound from "bough." Take the "o" sound from "people." Take and extend the "s" sound from "choose." Then take the "t" sound from "bidet." Put them all together, and what happens? You change "ghost" to "zzzzz." With the soothing background of a string quartet and lack of perceptible chemistry onstage, that’s about what happens to the stage musical "Ghost" at Georgia Ensemble Theatre.

This is not a horrible production, but it lacks any hint of the stage magic that was the highlight of the Broadway tour of "Ghost." Here, we have a unit set of three doors on top of a couple of platforms, a scrim behind them on which wan projections sometimes appear, and several suspended doors above the orchestra that is ensconced upstage (behind the scrim). The suspended doors are interesting visually when they are illuminated, but they don’t resonate within the play. Lighting and movable set pieces indicate various locations, but in a fairly obvious way. Jamie Bullins’ scenic design and Bryan Rosengrant’s lighting design get the job done, but little more.

Preston Goodson’s sound design, Emmie Tuttle’s costume design, and Ricardo Aponte’s choreography show evidence of similar workmanlike achievement. Jonathan Horne’s fight choreography is sub-standard, with some obvious misses, while Bethany Irby’s music direction is no more than fine. Overall direction, by Robert J. Farley, shares this overall lack of stage magic.

Ensemble performances range from barely acceptable to occasionally entertaining. Matt Lewis does a nice job as a soft-shoeing ghost, T’Arica Crawford puts lots of sparkle into a couple of roles, and Shelli Delgado shows professionalism and stage presence in her roles. In supporting roles, Jeremy Wood and Skyler Brown play villains eventually getting their just (but rather violent) desserts. Mr. Wood has a lovely singing voice, but comes across more as bland than as charmingly malevolent. Mr. Brown has the menace down, but doesn’t have much to do other than to appear menacing.

The lovers at the center of the story are the earnest Chase Peacock and the earnest Kylie Brown. There’s a lot of sadness in the story, which might explain their somewhat one-note expressiveness, but it doesn’t work to involve the audience deeply in their relationship. Both have powerful, true voices, but I found the many long-held notes in Ms. Brown’s songs to have a piercing quality. We don’t fall in love with their voices or their personalities.

The true standout in the show is Kandice Arrington as the unwilling psychic Oda Mae Brown. She nails the comedy of the role, combining that with a fine voice and the most colorful costumes in evidence. The show sparks up every moment she is onstage, which unfortunately isn’t enough, but which fortunately occurs in most of the second act. Kudos to her.

"Ghost the Musical" was revised from its original U.K. form for Broadway, for its national tour, and now for a chamber version requiring only a cast of ten and musical accompaniment of a string quartet, piano, and guitar. To judge from Georgia Ensemble’s production, the authors still haven’t gotten it right. [POST A COMMENT REGARDING THIS REVIEW]


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