BWW Review: SLEEPING BEAUTY at Downtown Cabaret Children's Theatre

BWW Review: SLEEPING BEAUTY at Downtown Cabaret Children's Theatre

On Saturday, April 21, I had the pleasure of seeing yet another brilliant comedic musical adaptation of a classic children's story, SLEEPING BEAUTY, at the Downtown Cabaret Children's Theatre, in Bridgeport, CT. Phill Hill continues with his brilliant writing that simultaneously keeps adults and children engaged in the story and laughing at the humor.

Directed by Frank Root, this show has an all-star cast of actors and actresses who have entertained us in numerous other productions. All the actors have roles that showcase their talents and help make this show so great. The cast brings the audience into the show right from the start in a rousing rendition of the Beatles' "Birthday."

Ashley DePascale shines as Queen Henrietta, and then as the central character, Adelaide, who, for this production, is the title role. Queen Henrietta is Adelaide's mother in the opening scene that is set nearly sixteen years prior to the main story. As Adelaide, Ashley DePascale sings "Perfect Day," which is one of the musical highlights.

Eric Regan is also double-cast, but as a father and son. King Waldemire, in the opening scene, has a heavy British accent, and the catchphrase, "tally-ho," which the kids in the audience enjoy echoing. This role showcases another level of depth in Eric Regan's talents, as he is convincing as a very Monty Python type comical character. When the show moves about sixteen years ahead, Eric Regan then becomes Henrik, the prince, a role that showcases Eric Regan's singing talent, while also reveals Eric Regan's abilities to play two very different characters in the same show, while being believable in both.

Lance Anthony plays King Reginald, who is Adelaide's father, even though he does not have custody of her, as she is growing up. At one point, during this role, Lance Anthony gets to show his ability as an Elvis impersonator, with talent that impresses the entire audience.

Andrea Pane and Taylor Hoffman play the fairies, Siri and Alexa, respectively. There are a lot of very comical scenes which anyone who owns the Siri or Alexa products can easily relate to. Andrea Pane continues to provide the first-rate entertainment we have seen in Goldilocks, while Taylor Hoffman delivers her finest performance ever in this role that truly highlights her incredible talents.

Corinne Marshall plays Sorsha, the villain that Disney fans may know as "Maleficent." This role highlights her strong vocals and lets her shine as the antagonist, showing us that she can excel as a villain, too.

Robert Peterpaul who delivered a powerful dramatic performance as Moritz in Spring Awakening, and a strong lead role as Pinocchio in Pinocchio now shows us yet another side of his stellar acting arsenal in the role of the bumbling villain sidekick, Chauncy. In character the whole time, Robert Peterpaul continues to impress the audience with how well he can become any type of character.

The lighting and sounds effects are amazing, but highlighted by one of the finest special effects I have ever seen anywhere, in a stage performance. There is a scene in which Sorsha uses magic to spy on a conversation between King Reginald and Henrik. King Reginald and Henrik are shown on stage right, with a spotlight in a certain manner, combined with echo effects on their microphones to create the aura of their conversation being viewed through a distant lens, successfully making live a concept that is typically only depicted on cartoons.

I highly recommend SLEEPING BEAUTY, for the whole family. It is scheduled to continue to run at the Downtown Cabaret Children's Theatre, in Bridgeport, CT through May 20, 2018. For tickets and times, please go to http://dtcab.com/show/sleeping-beauty/#buy-tickets.

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From This Author Sean Fallon

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