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Little Shop of Horrors

a Musical Black Comedy
CATEGORY : COMEDY DRAMA MUSICAL PUPPET
by Howard Ashman and Alan Menken

COMPANY : Kudzu Playhouse [WEBSITE]
VENUE : Kudzu Playhouse [WEBSITE]
ID# 2720

SHOWING : March 14, 2008 - April 13, 2008

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PRODUCTION DESCRIPTION

Little Shop of Horrors is a 1982 Off-Broadway musical about a nerdy florist shop worker who raises a plant that feeds on human blood. The musical was based on the low-budget 1960 black comedy The Little Shop of Horrors, directed by Roger Corman. The musical score, composed by Menken in the style of 1960's rock and roll, doo-wop and early Motown, included several show-stoppers including "Skid Row (Downtown)," "Somewhere That's Green," and "Suddenly Seymour," as well as the title song.

March 14, 2008 - April 13, 2008
Fridays & Saturdays at 8:00 pm
Sunday Matinees March 16, 23, 30 & April 6 & 13 at 2:30 pm

Kudzu Playhouse
Main Stage & Family Theatre
10743 Alpharetta Highway
Roswell, GA 30076
Phone: (770) 594-1020
Fax: (770) 594-1318
e-mail: kudzuplayhouse@aol.com


CAST & CREW LIST
Director Jerry Harlow
Stage Manager Kathy Manning
Music Director Spencer G. Stephens
Assistant Director Traci Davison
Costume Designer Robert Hadaway
Sound Designer Rob Hardie
Set Designer Wally Hinds
Assistant Stage Manager Brian Lane
Pit Director Kelly Lane
Choreographer Katie O'Neill
Lighting Designer David Shelton
Sound Designer David Shelton
Bass Guitar Jeff Boyce
Keyboards, Guitar Don Keel
Keyboards Kelly Lane
Percussion Mary Beth Morrison
Ensemble Lani Brooks
Crystal Aretha Burton
Audrey II Manipulation Ben Coffee
Chiffon Emily Dillson
Ronnette Kelly Elizabeth Grady
Audrey II Voice Patrick Hill
Mushnik Wally Hinds
Audrey Lora Jacobs
Ensemble Kathy Manning
Orin, et al. Jason Meinhardt
Ensemble Jordan Prince
Click to Submit Cast & Crew Info for this production
REVIEWS

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Little Shop of Laughs
by Ratatouille
Thursday, April 10, 2008
4.0
Well I really enjoyed the show. The set was really good and believeable, The audrey II puppeteers were pretty good it just kind of killed the mood when you actually saw the people in black inside the mouth. The music was good having a live orchestra always helps. They were fantastic. But I can't expect anything less coming from the Kudzu Playhouse. Audrey's voice was beautiful she really knew how tell a story. Seymore also had a phenominal voice too.(Personally he was too cute to play that dorky roll)haha. But he still did a good job. I didn't really like the idea of the stragglers coming on on stage before the show started especially that chick who was POPPING THAT ---- GUM!! Irritating and then she continued to do it during the curtain speech how rude. The doo wop girls were very interesting,Ronnett the soprano was great but she didn't belong in that sort of show her singing like many others was too refined to do a comedy like that. The other two girls were really good Crystal oh my goodness everytime she sang I thought I was at a Diva of Lengends concert. Chiffon (the one with pigtails i believe) was good when I finally heard her she sang soft and if someone could give her the note STOP CONCENTRATING SO HARD. When she was singing her facially expression was dead she was concentrating too hard and it took away from me listening to her sing. Other than that the show was Fantastic. I would love to see it again before it closes.
Rat Out- [POST A COMMENT REGARDING THIS REVIEW]
I think i kno u ! by g8grrl
lol
U know ME? by Ratatouille
why do you think you know me? What gives you this idea?
Maybe I do by g8grrl
Maybe i dont
Very enjoyable
by LowlyChorusMember
Friday, April 4, 2008
4.5
I had the pleasure of seeing LSOH on Easter Sunday. It was the first time I had ever seen it, and had never seen the movie either. Therefore I did not come into the theatre with any expectation of previous performances or to make comparisons to any other production.

That being said, I thoroughly enjoyed the show. I know a couple of folks in the show, but have tried not to let that influence my review. They all know me well enough so that I do not have to say something I do not believe to appease them.

I felt the "Greek Chorus" girls ensemble was precious in every way (singing, acting and dancing), so much so that I was not busy looking at their footwear or wondering why the costumer chose those particular dresses for them. I guess I'm just naive enough to just "go with it" and enjoy it. Same goes for the wrong period choices. If I went to be a critic like Dedalus, I would bitch and moan about those things. That is his job, not mine. I went to be entertained. (That's why I usually go to see a show.)

The black box space worked for this show, and the use of the revolving flower shop was clever. I did not notice any noise when the set piece moved. Maybe it was quieter by the time I saw it. I also did not have an issue with a misplaced speaker for Audrey II's voice if that was still true on Easter.

I thought the principals were well-suited for their roles, especially Seymour and Audrey. What fantastic and strong voices Reed and Lora have! They had good chemistry throughout the show. Overall the musical direction and band were right on in my opinion.

Jason did a fine job portraying so many characters, particularly the Dentist. I thought that Patrick voiced the plant very much in character with what I thought a person-eating plant should sound like (LOL).

Even though the largest plant puppet itself was a little "worse for wear," I decided to overlook the little tears and the lack of masking when I could see a little too much inside the plant. And yes, it was a little close for the plant and the performers, but what the hell are you going to do when the plant is almost as big as the shop? I let that old "suspension of belief" take over and again "just went with the flow." I wanted to mention the plant puppeteer and the fine job he did. I'm sure that was a challenge.

Don't expect perfection, but if you do expect to be entertained, this is the ticket for you. See it before it's gone! [POST A COMMENT REGARDING THIS REVIEW]
Missed Period
by Dedalus
Saturday, March 29, 2008
3.5
That old chestnut (and Dedalus favorite) “Little Shop of Horror” has landed at Kudzu Playhouse, boasting some major assets that overcome some considerable (in any other production) impediments. Despite the shortcomings (and, I’m hoping my comments won’t sink into director Jerry Harlow’s flesh like the overbite of a hungry vegetable), this is a pleasant evening in the theatre.

Let’s get the bad news out of the way first. My criticisms of the production boil down to two concepts – Period and Detail.

First, the Period. This is a play firmly rooted in the early sixties. References, slang, music style, even attitude belong to those few short pre-Beatle post-Ike years. If Kudzu were attempting an “anytime” universality approach, it is a bad idea – it makes jokes fall flat, and the references way way out-of-place. Just some examples – everyone gathers around a seventies-era Cassette-Player/Radio to listen to Seymour’s broadcast. Mushnik pulls out what looks like a digital camera for a photo at one point. One of the “Trio of Ragamuffins” is wearing Air Jordans. Even the trio’s late Act II costumes are more late sixties Supremes than early sixties Chiffons. More to the point, when the period references come, the cast acts as if they’re meaningless – the “Levittown” reference gets a “Where’s that?” reaction that kills the joke completely, and the reference to “plastic on the furniture” comes across like a personal idiosyncrasy instead of the cultural low point it was (those of us who remember sticking to our grandparents’ plastic slipcovers on hot summer afternoons certainly get the joke).

Next, the details. Yes, this goes along with my period complaints (What is suggestion of period if not attention to details?). More than that, though, are little things – Skid Row costumes that are as clean as if they just came off the rack, $100 roses that consist of 2 or 3 dead stems (if it were meant as a joke, it certainly fell flat). Perfectly clean playing cards (any bets as to whether all 52 were included?). An “escape” from Audrey II that was visible. An Audrey II design that required blocking actors actually touching its mouth (It was an admittedly small playing area, but designing the plant with the mouth vertical, like the smaller version, would have avoided this distraction – I couldn’t help but think “Why doesn’t the plant just eat them if they’re that close?”)

Before I turn this into a major vent wallow, let me shift gears here and let you know why none of this really matters. Reed Higgins as Seymour and Lora Jacobs as Audrey give two of the most exciting performances I’ve seen this year. Every time they open their mouths, they are in character, on key, and compelling. They create characters that are familiar to those who know the show, but surprising and original in their own rights. And they sing like seasoned pros. Not to put too fine a point on it, but I could watch them sing the phone book.

Jason Meinhardt is also fun in the difficult multi-character roles of Orin and the three tempters in “Meek Shall Inherit.” If the trio had voices that didn’t blend well together, they each had fine individual moments. On the downside, one song was very painful to sit through, owing to forgotten lyrics (and a “who cares that I forgot” shrug-off by the singer), but, the less said about that, the better.

This is a small, intimate venue, which provides some benefits, but more challenges. I’m not sure all the challenges were met, but all the opportunities were taken full advantage of. I liked the street folks coming out before the start, I hated the noise the turntable made (including in the middle of one song). I liked the live orchestra above and behind the singers (which made voices clear and unamplified). I hated the teeny tiny “escapes” around the side of the set. And why was the speaker with “Audrey II’s” voice placed so far to the side? Apparently, this plant was not only carnivorous, but a ventriloquist as well. And, but, also ….….

Oh, the heck with it. I loved Seymour and Audrey, I loved the play and its songs. Anything else is just me being picky picky picky. I quibble about the details, but one detail was perfectly realized, and it closed the first Act with a bang. Of course, I’m referring to the head and body parts. Yummmm!

-- Brad Rudy (BKRudy@aol.com)







[POST A COMMENT REGARDING THIS REVIEW]
Re: Missed Period by Richard Long
Someone missed their period?
Mr. Long: by Dedalus
I daresay the pregnant pause following your comment tells you all you need to know.
Missed period by g8grrl
The last show i watched with a missed period was Menopause the musical.
OH YEAH by Richard Long
Now that was a good comment g8grrl (or however you spell it) lol

by sigmund
Monday, March 24, 2008
NR
[POST A COMMENT REGARDING THIS REVIEW]
Wonderful
by g8grrl
Monday, March 24, 2008
4.5
I so much love this Little Shop and want to come back again! It is very wonderful and creative. The music is stunning and the dancing is hilarous! And there isn't a bad singer in the house. The two leads are perfect, they made me cry. I also like the ho and ohhh the dentist. Sexy! The dowop girls are great too. The one thing I didn't like is the audrey two puppets are messy. Other than that this show is perfect. I had a wondrous time and recomend it to ALL! [POST A COMMENT REGARDING THIS REVIEW]
Little Shop, Big Expectations
by Sri
Tuesday, March 18, 2008
3.5
Overall, this is a really good show. It does all the things community theater is supposed to do. It entertains, while sticking very close to the script and provids it all on a budget. Unfortunatley, it doesn't go far beyond that. There is very little, if any, vision here at all.
The pluses include an innovative stage design. My husband and I loved the rotating stage and felt it kept scene changes from being too long. The overall look of the scenery was quite good. The pacing is excellent and the energy is extremely good. As for the cast, some are stellar and some are okay. The stellar include Jason Meinhardt as the Dentist et al. Phenomenal performance. Two of the Urchins are quite good in both singing and acting, but the delivery of the third is lacking, to say the least. Reed Higgins is a wonderful Seymore, but has very little to work with in his Audrey or Mushnik. His best scenes are with the plant and the dentist. Smaller characters delivered big and all ensemble peices were wonderful.
To the not so good. Mushnik was line reading through the entire show. Audrey lacks delivery, but her singing is top notch. The Plant has a great voice, but it is the wrong voice for this show. The puppetry is great at certain points (first plant:hysterical, middle plant:great, final plant:awkward). Tech problems were obvious, but it was opening weekend, The corny director's speech could definatly be cut.
As I stated before, this is a really good show, and definately worth seeing. It has issues, but the highlights overcome the issues. It is a fair rendition of the Off-off Broadway production, and to be fair, thay did NOT copy the movie. To sum it up, it's good entertainment. [POST A COMMENT REGARDING THIS REVIEW]
Little Shop Of Horrors
by Bill Mann
Sunday, March 16, 2008
4.5
Often times the second night of a show is a little flat because of tech week and all the stress that can come with that, This was not the case at Kudzu. My wife and I found the cast to be really on top of their roles. Jerry Harlow has put together a topnotch cast and crew, there are no weak performers in this cast. Lora Jacobs is perfect for the role of Audrey and Reed Higgins is everything that you could wish to find for Seymour. The music, the acting and evreything and everyone involved made for a wonderful evening. Try not to miss this show.
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