BWW Review: MAMMA MIA! at The Public Theater of San Antonio
MAMMA MIA! has been entertaining audiences around the world since its debut in 1999. It has received award after award for all of its richness in the storyline, the various actors who have been a part of it, the costumers, the set designers, the lighting people, the directors, the producers and many others who have received accolades for the stunning productions that have popped up all over the world. But, San Antonio recently saw the opening night of this fantastic show at The Public Theater directed by Ken Urso who proved his directing abilities were unmatched. MAMMA MIA'S story is one that uses music to really tell the story and make it come to life. The show was conceived by Judy Craymer and the book was written by Catherine Johnson. With the music by the legendary band ABBA, the show is one that should not be missed.
The Public Theater's production of MAMMA MIA! is stunning and shows the professionalism of the cast and crew involved. The stage, although simple, helps to set the mood for the show and the transitions between scenes is seamless throughout the show. Equity member Megan DeYoung played the role of Donna and belted out some amazing songs including the title track, "Mamma Mia," "One of Us," and "The Winner Takes It All." DeYoung has what it takes to be the strong, independent and determined Donna. The part of Sophie was eloquently portrayed by Jessi Little. Little is a graduate of TCU in Fort Worth and is excited to be back in Texas performing. She showed her professional training that made her a perfect choice for one of the main characters.
Beth Erwin as Tanya and Briane Green as Rosie worked very well together onstage along with DeYoung as they form the band Donna and the Dynamos. The interactions between each made the trio more believable and authentic. In sharing such songs as "Chiquitita" and "Dancing Queen," it was fun to see them connect onstage. But, the best came at the end when a mini concert of sorts was shared as Donna and the Dynamos reunited onstage and sang "Dancing Queen" one more time together.
The roles of the confused "Dads" were played by equally talented actors including James Welch as Harry Bright, Aaron Ely as Bill Austin and Miguel Ochoa as Sam Carmichael. Each stood out in their own ways and it was evident that all were up for the challenge and they had the talent to prove it. And Nick Szoeke played the part of Sky, Sophie's fiancé. You may remember him in the recent productions of THE BRIDGES OF MADISON COUNTY and THE HUNCHBACK OF NOTRE DAME. Szoeke, as an equity member, proved again that he had the strength and stamina to play the fun role of a carefree Sky in this particular production of MAMMA MIA!
MAMMA MIA! plays at the The Public Theater of San Antonio until August 5, 2018. Don't miss this one! It's worth your time and investment in this production. Get tickets at thepublicsa.org. It will be a great way to prepare for the release of MAMMA MIA! HERE WE GO AGAIN that opens July 20, 2018 as well.