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The Wedding Singer

a Musical Comedy
by Chad Beguelin (book and lyrics), Matthew Sklar (music), Tim Herlihy (book)

COMPANY : Act 3 Productions [WEBSITE]
VENUE : Act 3 Playhouse [WEBSITE]
ID# 5262

SHOWING : April 13, 2018 - April 29, 2018



Based on the hit Adam Sandler movie, "The Wedding Singer" takes us back to a time when hair was big, greed was good, collars were up and a wedding singer might just be the coolest guy in the room. It’s 1985, and Robbie Hart is New Jersey’s favorite wedding singer. He’s the life of the party until his own fiancée leaves him at the altar. Shot through the heart, Robbie makes every wedding as disastrous as his own. Enter Julia, a winsome waitress who wins his affection. As luck would have it, Julia is about to be married to a Wall Street shark, and, unless Robbie can pull off the performance of a decade, the girl of his dreams will be gone forever.

Robbie Hart Candice McLellan
Director Michael Rostek
Angie Alisha Boley
Ensemble/Mookie Skyler Brown
Ensemble/Imelda Marcos Alyssa Davis
Rosie Sophie Decker
Ensemble/Donatella Emily Diamond
Ensemble/Travel Agent Abigail Ellis
Ensemble/Tiffany Laura Gronek
Ensemble/Ronald Reagan John Jenkins
George Kiernan Matts
Glen Guglia Jesse McWhorter
Ensemble/Billy Idol Richard Puscas
Sammy Dylan Parker Singletary
Linda/Cyndi Lauper Kristin Storla
Click to Submit Cast & Crew Info for this production


Wedding Zing
by playgoer
Monday, April 30, 2018
"The Wedding Singer" marries Adam Sandler’s off-beat brand of humor and ditties to a musical score by Chad Beguelin and Matthew Sklar. The result is light-hearted, bouncy entertainment.

In Act3’s production, a unit set is used in the newly reconfigured space (with the stage at the far end of the black box space). The upstage wall represents a giant boom box flanked by lists of the names of popular 80’s bands and pop performers. The central tape deck of the boom box folds down to represent a bed (which is firm enough to also function as a platform). Stage left there’s a balcony and, tucked into the corner of the audience aisle, a bar that carries on the 80’s theme with a VCR graphic. Lettering is fairly crude on the boom box, but otherwise Will Brooks’ set design suits the production very well.

Costumes, designed by Ali Olhausen, carry on the 80’s theme. There’s a beautiful wedding gown for Karlen Wilson in the initial wedding scene and a less wonderful one for heroine Julia (played by Emma Banze) later in the show, but otherwise the outfits tend toward the trendy and delightful. Hairstyles also suggest the 80’s, without becoming laughable stereotypes. Mary Sorrel’s props also tend to suggest the 80’s.

Jody Woodruff’s choreography adds to the bright, energetic feel of the show. There’s a lot of movement, and the ensemble sells every moment of it. Taylor Sorrel’s lighting design emphasizes the movement, highlighting different sections of the stage as action transitions from one spot to another. Gamble’s sound design keeps voices and backing tracks in balance. All the technical elements support the boundless enthusiasm shown by the cast.

Acting is good across the board. Sophia Decker is obviously too young to play grandmother Rosie, and Jesse McWhorter doesn’t have the vocal chops as Glen Guglia to equal the rest of the major players, but they carry their own in the show with full commitment to their roles. Kristin Storla has a small part in the proceedings as Linda, but triumphs in her songs and moments (and also does fine work as fight choreographer). Evan McLean takes on the title role with fine acting, guitar-playing, and singing skills, easily roping in the audience to be on his side in his search for true love. Dylan Parker Singletary is a consistent delight as sidekick Sammy, while rubber-limbed Kiernan Matts goes overboard with fey poses and mannerisms as bandmate George. Ms. Banze brings sweetness to our heroine Julia, contrasting with Janah Merlin’s more brash personality as her friend Holly, and both sell their songs with flair. The ensemble flesh out the show with deft characterizations, sparked by some fine dancing by Ms. Wilson and Richard Puscas and particularly strong vocals from Skyler Brown.

Director Michael Rostek and music director John-Michael d’Haviland have done a first-rate job in whipping their cast into shape and providing a fluid, tuneful journey from start to finish. "The Wedding Singer" may not have the dramatic heft of "Hamlet," but it’s guaranteed to affix a grin to the face of every audience member. Act3 continues on in its tradition of presenting well-crafted productions of recent musicals. [POST A COMMENT REGARDING THIS REVIEW]


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