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Review: SEUSSICAL LET'S YOUR IMAGINATION RUN WILD AT TEXAS STATE at Texas State University Theatre & Dance

This productions runs from April 19 - 24 in the Patti Strickel Harrison Theatre

Review: SEUSSICAL LET'S YOUR IMAGINATION RUN WILD AT TEXAS STATE at Texas State University Theatre & Dance Seussical directed by Ryan Scarlata is a modern take on the world of Dr. Seuss. From the moment you walk into the Patti Strickel Harrison Theatre Mr. Scarlata's vision is clear. The stage is set not with the typical Dr. Seuss swirls, flowers, and trees, but a concrete jungle, that of your average big city street.

The musical opens with folx going about their business. One person handing out "Save the Planet" flyers, another group catching a selfie with their favorite Drag Queen, a young boy arguing with his parents, and a street artist attempting to sell her wares. The magic comes to life when the artist (Cat in the Hat) meets the young boy (Jojo) and ignites his imagination.

In the role of Jojo, Morgan Montgomery shines. Morgan's commitment to the character and amazing vocal ability brought Jojo to life in a way that had the audience yearning that his imagination could run wild. Cayla Primous as The Cat in the Hat was the epitome of the mischievous character. Cayla's voice adapted to all the various styles the musical required with ease and her charisma shone through in her side glances to the other characters. This duo kept the audience engaged in the imagination of childhood from start to finish.

Our friend the "Save the Planet" person at the start ended up transforming into Horton the Elephant, expertly played by Connor Lewis. They had a real knack for capturing the audiences heart through their depiction of Horton's purity. Their performance left the audience cheering for Horton and hoping things would work out. Another person who captured the heart of the audience was Gertrude played by Madeleine Bourgeois. Her comedic timing and powerhouse of a voice appropriately stole the show during her numbers. Her characterization and ability to make the best facial expressions left the audience laughing and reminded me a bit of Anna Kendrick.

This cast was truly remarkable and every supporting character had such fierce commitment to their characters. Mayzie played by Alex Aponte was fantastic not only navigating the vocal needs of the role, the charisma that is Mayzie's star power, but also doing all of that in drag. All I have to say is he certainly can strut his stuff! But he also captured the tender heart underneath all the glitz and glam that really made audience come to love Mayzie. Hailey Thomas' Sour Kangaroo expertly served face throughout the performance while singing notes that ran the gamut of range. Mr. and Mrs. Mayor played by Brandon Doan and Taylor Aronson were the suburban couple the audience didn't know they needed. They worked so well together and kept the audience laughing.

The entire cast is to be commended. Their expert execution of Cassie Abate's choreography was truly something spectacular to watch. The choreography ranged vastly from ballet to an amazing tap number during "Having A Hunch". Each performer excelled in the choreography with ease and I found myself thinking that the show was at a much higher caliber than some professional shows I had seen. The use of light and sound were also quite spectacular. MacKenzie Mulligan's lighting design enhanced each movement happening on stage.

At the end of the play not only did I not want to leave but I wanted to come back for more. I might head back with my daughters to see it again. It was that good.

How to Get Tickets

Seussical is running from April 19th to 24th at Texas State University's Patti Strickel Harrison Theatre. Tickets can be purchased online.

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From This Author - Bryan Stanton

Bryan Stanton is a theatre educator in San Antonio,TX. Prior to jumping into the classroom he worked as an Event and Show Producer for both SeaWorld San Antonio and SeaWorld San Diego. While in San... (read more about this author)

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