FMCT bring us a Practically Perfect production of Mary Poppins.

In what might be the biggest production ever brought to the stage by FMCT, Mary Poppins is a wonderfully done show that is fun for the whole family. With almost 60 members in the cast & crew plus another dozen in the pit orchestra this was no small undertaking but director Adam Pankow knocks another one out of the park.

From the opening number of Chim Chim Cher-ee performed by Bert (Tony Peterson) I knew this would be a great show. Tony was spot on as Bert, and he really shined in Jolly Holiday, Let's Go Fly a Kite and of course Step in Time (my favorite dance number from this show - hats off to choreographers Patrick Kasper & Karin Rudd).

Newcomer April Maertens was absolutely delightful as Mary Poppins. She had the voice and the mannerisms perfected. I found out she hadn't performed in a theatre production in over10 years while a student at Shanley, although she did perform opera at NDSU. I do hope she decides to do more local productions. She is very talented.

Clayton Perala as George Banks was one of my favorite characters. He played the old, cranky, work obsessed father so well and his singing was beautiful especially on A Man Has Dreams, which was one of the standout performances of the night. After just seeing him in the FMCT production of Xanadu, it was great to see him back on stage again so soon.

Another standout performer, who was also in Xanadu (and Calendar Girls) is Tanya Weets as Winifred Banks/ I have to say this is my favorite role I have seen her in yet. Her voice on Being Mrs Banks was beautiful and powerful.

The director decided to use 2 pairs of actors/actresses to play Jane & Michael Banks. I am hoping I can see the other pair of kids before the show is done. For the performance I attended the roles were played by Ava Grams & Seth Lamont. These 2 kids held their own with the adult performers and even managed to steal a few scenes for themselves. I love seeing kids in shows and I do hope they stick with it.

I do have to mention Dawn Gunderson as Mrs. Corry and her performance on Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious. I have seen Dawn on stage many times, and also have had the pleasure in seeing numerous shows she has directed for Moorhead High including this years The Miracle Worker. I always love the directors that are willing to show their students how to do it.

So many supporting members in the cast that really helped bring this show to a higher level. This is such a fun show and you still have a few chances to see it.

Congrats to conductor Isaac Schwartz and the wonderful work of the pit orchestra.

***Photo credits Perry Rust

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From This Author Brian Michaels

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