“Oh, the thinks you can think…”
What I thought I was going to see when I walked into the theatre at Monroe Middle School was a fun show with kids who were just having fun. They would be hams on stage, but not honestly playing the part.
“When you think about Seuss..”
What I got was a treat. I was a little apprehensive as I waited for the show to start because the tech desk was in the middle of the auditorium. There were so many people walking by that I worried about the wires since I knew that everything from sound to lights to music were all sitting on top of that table. So when the lights when down, I drew a deep breath and hoped for the best.
After the required “No photography” and “Turn off your phones” speeches by Director Paul Sawyer, the focus shifted to the trademark red and white striped hat that was downstage center. From there, the show took off with Jojo and The Cat who lead into the story of “Horton Hears A Who.” Ryan Mohs as Horton may not have been the size of an elephant, but he truly had the heart of that lovable character. I loved that the ears he wore were wickedly floppy, but I don’t think they were big enough.
Gertrude McFuzz the bird that had the sad single feather tail was played by Gwyneth Forrester. Just so y’all knows, this girl is FIERCE!!! I love that she delved into her role and was in character every single moment she was on stage. Not only was her character well done, she could sing. She projected well and the mic issues that affected some of the other people were no problem for her. She’s gonna go far if she pursues a career in The Arts.
Not to be outdone by her sister, Audrey Forrester who played little Jojo, likewise added depth of character, vocal ability, and stage presence to the show. She was adorably vulnerable yet hopeful that they would be saved by Horton.
The Wickershams (Chris Clausen, Austin Nedved, Bailey Nedved, Siena Trent, Skylin Wellbrock, and Wilson Skjerven) had some great choreography with TONS of personality.
Other notable mentions: Katie Bieber as Yertle The Turtle had some pipes! Sadly, part of her scene had some mic problems. Mayzie LaBird, once her mic was fixed, was able to be the diva that she is! The 3 bird girls were so sassy!!! As was the Sour Kangaroo, Elise Bankosh.
The whole show moved at a quick clip and it only felt like the first act only seemed to last a half hour. Aside from the few mic issues, the spot op needs to have a steadier grip on the light.
There are so many wonderful moments in this show that most people walked out with huge smiles on their faces, as did I.
These young performers are the future of the theatre scene and it’s pretty cool to see what the future holds.
Seussical Jr. plays for 3 more shows. Friday and Saturday night 3/9-10/12 at 7PM and Saturday 3/10/12 at 1PM
You can find more info at the end of THIS blog post! Go see this show. It’s a lot of fun, some great harmonies, and a ton of happy kids.