THE FANTASTICKS - the original fringe musical (1959)

musicals and operas · good people theater company · Ages 10+ · family friendly · United States

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ELLEN DOSTAL certified reviewer June 07, 2014
tagged as: #LAThtr #hff14
Despite their best efforts, the good folks of Good People Theater Company are unable to recreate the magic they achieved with their 2013 fringe hit, A Man of No Importance, in their current revival of The Fantasticks. Contributing to the lackluster production are pacing issues and actors without the singing ability, stage presence, or emotional depth to effectively handle the demands of the roles. The exposed nature of comedy makes it even more difficult to pull off than drama and so much more obvious when it isn’t working. In the absence of real passion, poignancy and an understanding of how to blend the bitter with the sweet - which is what makes this Schmidt & Jones classic so satisfying - it left me feeling restless. Even the mor... full review
ENCI BOX certified reviewer June 07, 2014
THE FANTASTICKS was a great way for me to start my 2014 Fringe adventure! A wonderful show with great actors and great directing. The actors were strong enough without a mike to be heard and they all had great chemistry. The mute was a joy to watch as she silently helped actors getting dressed and as she set the mood for each scene. Mortimer and Henry played their roles with such ease and joy, that they could put on their own two-person show and I would go see it. I sat front row next to the harp, which was gentle enough to hear all the actors and it was a great experience for me to watch the harp player rock out to some of the tunes. :-) Get your tickets and catch this show by the Good People Theater Company! It will be worth your time... full review
SHARI BARRETT certified reviewer June 07, 2014
Janet Miller has magnificently directed a show close to the hearts of many of us. The music is divine, enhanced with the addition of a lovely harp, played by Jillian Risigari-Gai. I have never seen the show done with a harp before and it makes a wonderful addition to so many scenes, often adding magic to the sweep of a hand in the air. It's no wonder that the original production included a harp! All of the actors bring a sense of wonder and joy to their roles, with tall, dark and handsome Christopher Karbo cutting a dashing figure as El Gallo, especially the way he can handle a red satin cape. The two fathers are a riot, and their choreography is light and cute at every turn. Although at times it was difficult to hear Luisa and Matt's wor... full review
JAKE YOUNG certified reviewer June 24, 2014
As a young theatrical advocate, it is best to put right out of the gate that The Fantasticks was truly an enjoyable experience all around for me. Not only was the cast strong all-around, but the production team's talent was extremely evident as well. This show, which I have been longing to see for a few years now, has greatly fascinated me, and the members of Good People Theater Company exceeded my expectations. This is because it is a simple story that is kept simple, yet all-the-while intriguing. The Fantasticks tells the story of a boy and a girl, whose parents pose a feud of epic proportion with one another (and whose real intentions are to have their respective son and daughter married to one another). The "Original Fringe Musical" crea... full review
NEAL WEAVER certified reviewer June 13, 2014
***This review first appeared on artsinla.com.*** When this modest little musical, with book and lyrics by Tom Jones and music by Harvey Schmidt, first opened Off-Broadway in 1960, no one could have predicted the astonishing success it would achieve. It ran for a grand 42 years, racking up an astronomical 17,162 performances, and has since been performed all over the world. The show was loosely adapted from an old play, The Romanticks, by that arch-romantic Edmond Rostand, creator of Cyrano de Bergerac. If, as Thornton Wilder observed, art is the orchestration of clichés, this is a prime example. Most of the jokes—dealing with the follies and foibles of young lovers, and the scheming of ambitious parents—were old when Shakespeare was... full review