BWW Review: GUYS AND DOLLS JR. at The Schools Of St.Mary Performing Arts Department And The St.Mary's Elementary School
There's nothing like an old fashioned Broadway musical and St. Mary's fantastic production of "Guys and Dolls" presented by their performing arts department makes everything right with the world. This classic fable of gamblers, showgirls, sinners, and evangelists has been on Broadway four times but never performed on the Great White Way by elementary school students. Watching this professional and dazzling production, it was hard to believe the actors were only children singing and dancing their hearts out. With such melodic gems as "Luck Be A Lady," "Bushel and a Peck," and "I'll Know," this musical fantasy is timeless!
A multitalented cast of many took the St. Mary's stage and performed this blockbuster of a musical with great energy and extreme dedication. "Guys and Dolls" follows New Yorkers Sky Masterson and Sarah Brown- a gambler and his love interest trying to reform him, and Nathan Detroit and Miss Adelaide- a competitive gambler and his showgirl fiancé of fourteen years. The city serves as the backdrop for this splashy story as the gamblers constantly seek a safe place to shoot craps and the showgirls sing and dance the night away. Chaos ensues as bets are made, couples break up and reunite, and everyone lives happily ever after.
William Hoffman leads the brilliant cast as Sky Masterson. A veteran of many musical productions, this is his greatest role ever. His singing voice, city accent, and stage presence are spot on. He is enormously talented and commands the stage. Broadway will soon be calling for him! Carlos Castillo made a great Nathan Detroit and Mia Asenjo was an endearing Sarah Brown. Another very talented performer was Alessandra Barlas as Miss Adelaide. Her acting and singing were absolutely impeccable!
Other notable performers include both Giancarlo Cascarino and Spencer O'Reilly as Nicely-Nicely Johnson and Benny Southstreet. Both outstanding singers, they propelled the story along with their comedy and wit. Master Cascarino certainly brought down the house with his astounding rendition of "Sit Down You're Rockin' The Boat." Hugh Strecker was a terrific Big Jule and Maggie Ives was sensational as General Cartwright. The mission girls, the Hot Box girls, and the Cubanos all had their moment to shine and share their talents with us. Kudos as well to the Broadway Blockbuster Band!
Perhaps the funniest performance in the show was given by Brian Bernic as Officer Brannigan. He was simply hysterical each and everytime he opened his mouth on stage. His comic timing was over the top and had the audience in stitches.
Directed by Andrew Joseph Koslosky and choreographed by Dan Stravino, this production of "Guys and Dolls' was fresh and tailored to the actors' talents. This lively and delightful show brought the best out of each youngster involved and opened their door to the world of musical theater. I hope these fine young "guys and dolls" stick with performing for many years and shows to come.
Guys and Dolls Jr. is presented by The Schools of St.Mary Performing Arts Department and the St.Mary's Elementary School in Manhasset, Long Island. For more information and upcoming shows please go to: www.stmary11030.org
Starring: William Hoffman as Sky Masterson, Giancarlo Cascarino as Nicely-Nicely Johnson, Spencer O'Reilly as Benny Southstreet, Mia Asenjo as Sarah Brown, Carlow Castillo as Nathan Detroit, Alessandra Barlas as Miss Adeladine, Justin Cuomo as Arvide, Grace Buerger as Agatha, Ysabella Amurao as Callie, Maggie Ives as General Cartwright, Melanie Sultan as Mimi, John Deliso as Harry the Horse, Brian Bernie as Brannigan, Gabriella de Fazio as The Greek, Jazlyn Santos as Brandy Bottle Bates, Farrell Duffy as Scranton Slim, Chloe Desire as Society Max, Hugh Strecker as Big Jule, Jaden Pereyra as Angie the Ox, Jessica Kim, Jennifer Kim, and Jazz Ambeguia as the Mission Girls, Brooke Bosse, Kayla Blount, Molly Skrabut, Katie Miller, Jane Reyes, Isabella St.Juste, Brianna Ashley, Leilani We, Sheenagh Benn as The Hot Box Girls, Kayla Blount, Brianna Ashley, Leilani We, Jaden Pereyra, John Deliso, Hugh Strecker, Molly Skrabut, Isabelle St.Juste as the Cubanos, Clyde Bullard, Terence Purtell, Pat White and Brian Woodruff as the Broadway Blockbuster Band.