BWW Review: NEWSIES at Surflight Shines with a Fine Cast and Great Numbers
Editor's Note: We welcome guest reviewer, Ryan Myers to Broadwayworld New Jersey.
"Ain't it a fine life, Carrying The Banner!" Disney's Newsies is the second show this season of the newly reopened Surflight Theatre located in Beach Haven, New Jersey.
After a brief two-year hiatus of being closed, Surflight re-opened under the new management of producer Steve Steiner and his wife. They are working to bring a new face to Surflight and make it better than it has ever been before.
What Is the Story of Newsies? Based on the real-life Newsboy Strike of 1899, this new Disney musical tells the story of Jack Kelly, a rebellious newsboy who dreams of a life as an artist away from the big city. After publishing giant Joseph Pulitzer raises newspaper prices at the newsboys' expense, Kelly and his fellow newsies take action. With help from the beautiful female reporter Katherine Plumber, all of New York City soon recognizes the power of "the little man."
This production was lead by several young, fresh-faced talents, with many who have just graduated college or are still pursuing their degrees. The dancing in this show is incredible, and for the small amount of space that the actors have, they really made it work. The dancing numbers were some of the top highlights of the show.
Standouts from this show include the leading man himself "Jack Kelly" played by Logan Farine, who brings his handsome, boyish looks to the stage, as well as his solid tenacious voice for songs like "Santa Fe" and "Something To Believe In." He has his own version of Jack Kelly, and I thoroughly enjoyed that. Daniel Neale also shined as "Davey" by bringing his charm and personality to the role, as well as his fine singing voice in pieces like "Watch What Happens (Reprise), and "Seize The Day".
Morgan Rucker "Medda Larkin" brought the house down with her show stopping number "That's Rich!" She is a performer on the brink of great success, and I will be watching for her in the future.
Samuel Davis Olmedo warmed our hearts with his goofy and kind-hearted portrayal as the loveable "Crutchie." Lastly, Ricky Pope brought his own take as "Pulitzer" delivering humor and wit to the part that is usually played in a very serious and stern way.
Rounding out the cast is Benjamin Barham-Wiese, Emily Cobb, Bobby Davis, David Discenza, Richar Earl, Andrew Foote, Dale Given, Jonah Hale, Meggan Herod, Nina Gabriela Gross, Adrianne Hick, Sabrina Kalman, David Ossman, James Patton, McKenna Christine Poe, William Rivera (a standout with his solo in "King of New York!") , Madeline Rodrigue, Eoin Rude, Wyatt Slone, Seth Ryan Weinstein, Donte Wilder, and Vision Wilkes-Davis.
And while there were some technical flaws in Newsies, here's hoping that thee issues will be greatly improved for the theatre's future productions.
Disney's Newsies runs at The Surflight Theatre until Sunday, August 13th. For tickets, visit www.surflight.org or call the box office at 609-492-9477. With only a few weeks left, Newsies is the perfect show to bring the whole family to. Be sure to give yourself extra time because there is hardly any parking near the theatre, and you will have to park in town and then walk a few blocks. For more information and ticketing, visit: https://www.surflight.org/.
About Guest Reviewer, Ryan Myers
Ryan Myers (Rye My) is a soon to be college graduate who has a love and passion for all things entertainment news, especially the theater. He is Editor-in-Chief of the entertainment-lifestyle website RyeTheNewsGuy.com and has interviewed and rubbed elbows with many A-list Broadway and Hollywood celebrities over the years, giving him insider access to some of the best interviews and coverage in town. He is a blogger, performer, and activist and is "changing the face of news, one interview at a time!"
Photo Credit: Courtesy of Surflight Theatre