Oh my goodness! It's pretty clear that a career as a professional blogger is not in the cards for me. I have been very bad about new entries - sorry! So. Darned. Busy. But enough excuses - let's talk about the brilliant cast of Oliver!. This show is so fun for me because about 1/4 of the cast are old friends with whom I've worked before, and many of them are new talents that I am enjoying getting to know. There's the fabulous Erin Duffy (playing "Nancy") - we've done, gosh, four or five shows together including a previous production of Oliver! AND Lyric Arts audiences will remember her as Maria in The Sound of Music. (Insert joke here about going from playing a nun to a woman of rather lesser moral values.) So we can pretty much read each other's minds by now. Erin's voice is..........volcanic. She's absolutely amazing and her "Nancy" will break your heart. And she's purty, too.
Then there's my pal, Steve Florman, who was the "Captain" in The Sound of Music at Lyric Arts two years ago. We got along well then and by now we're old friends who like nothing better than giving each other a hard time. Steve is brilliant on many levels (one of the most intelligent people I know), and is a very fine actor - in this production he plays the key role of "Mr. Brownlow" (Oliver's savior) and he, too, will break your heart. Even though he's not as purty as Erin.
I had not previously worked with Corey Okonek - but will try very hard to do so again in the future. Corey plays the central role of "Fagin" and he is a director's dream-come-true. Such a gentleman, such a hard worker, and such an amazing presence on stage. I am endlessly impressed with him.
And Tom Goerger - also new to me and playing the evil "Bill Sykes." In real life, Tom is an extremely kind and gentle man. As Bill Sykes, he is terrifying. Seriously. He's amazing in the role and will give you a performance that you'll remember for some time to come. And Lyric Arts hereby informs you that it cannot be held responsible for any nightmares you may have as a result of experiencing Tom's intense portrayal.
And let's not forget the 25 - yes 25 - children in this show. They are GREAT! They sing, they dance, they talk, they walk. They are a very, very talented group of high energy (REALLY, REALLY, REALLY high energy) kids and they'll steal the show. They will - and one of these days I'm going to have to break that to the rest of the cast.
Rehearsals are going well - tonight was our first time with the orchestra - Saturday and Sunday we tech (add lighting, sound effects and other technical elements) and then........dress rehearsals. EXCITEMENT!
Come see our show, folks. You. Will. Like. It. Guaranteed!