During the hard lockdown I only had very few, very precious hours to myself. I managed to luck into a couple when the Pride and Prejudice musical flopped hard with my husband and daughter, and I was abandoned to relish it alone. I didn't really mind.
Mrs. Bennet and her daughters, from left to right:
Sharon Rietkerk, Mary Mattison, Melissa WolfKlain,
Chanel Tilghman, Tara Kostmayer, and Heather Orth.
|Mary Mattison and Sharon Rietkerk|
as Elizabeth and Jane Bennet.
|Justin Mortellitit as Mr. Darcy.|
I get the impression that Paul Gordon has a pretty personal connection to Darcy. This is where his voice, rather than Austen’s, breaks through. Darcy’s role is much larger in this production than it is in the book, and Gordon clearly has a strong notion of who and what Mr. Darcy should be, all of which I find believable and supported by Austen’s text. This interpretive characterization is probably the most interesting part of the play.
|Monique Hafen Adams and Travis Leland as Caroline |
and Charles Bingley. My favorite gown in the show!
Mr. Bingley is very well captured by Travis Leland. He is portrayed as tongue-tied and shy, which threw me off at first, but it comes together in the end, setting up his proposal scene to be one of the best moments in the play (as it should be). I also thought that Monique Hafen Adams as quite convincing as Caroline Bingley (as is so often the case, poor Mrs. Hurst and her husband were cut from the tale). Of the Bennet sister’s, I especially liked Mary (Melissa WolfKlain), who helped maintain a comic atmosphere, which was much needed, as I thought all the humor entirely sapped from Mr. Collins (Brian Herndon) and Lady Catherine’s (Lucinda Hitchcock Cone) characters. The former came off as predatory (maybe this is another nod to the contemporary world?), and the latter rather like Cruella De Vil. Maybe it was the jazzy song she sang. She did nail the imperiousness, but the comedy was missing from the script.
|Melissa WolfKlain as Mary Bennet,|
in fabulous day dress.
Overall, I really enjoyed escaping into this version of Pride and Prejudice. Streamingmusicals.com also has the company’s earlier production of Gordon’s Emma available. That will be the subject of my next post. They are staging his new Sense and Sensibility in December. I could get hooked.
Here is a clip featuring some of the songs from the show and a few more screenshots (with commentary). Enjoy!
|And from the back. Sorry for the blur.|
|I adore Miss Bingley’s gown.|
My feelings about Miss Bennet’s
I won’t repeat.
|Taylor Crousore and Mary Mattison|
|Gotta swoon for a great coat.|
|Lucinda Hitchcock Cone as Lady Catherine and company.|
|Brian Herndon, Lucinda Hitchcock Cone, and Christopher|
Vettel as Mr. and Mrs. Gardiner and Mrs. Reynolds, apparently