CATCH ME IF YOU CAN – Marie Clark Musical Theatre

CATCH ME IF YOU CAN – Marie Clark Musical Theatre

Reviewed by Kerry Cooper

May 2016

This intoxicating tale is borrowed from the 2002 movie and 1980 autobiography of the same name, chronicling the adventures of one Frank Abagnale Jr. His story makes for wonderful storytelling and as I witnessed on opening night an exhilarating musical.
Director Charissa McCluskey-Garcia has produced a wonderfully entertaining production that centres on the very likeable Frank Jr, played with charm and an abundance of talent by Jason Bensen. Carrying a large percentage of the dialogue and production numbers with confidence, Bensen shines in his role. FBI agent Carl Hanratty brought to life by David MacGillivray, is an excellent foil to his prey. Capturing the frustration and vulnerability of his character with aplomb. 
Strong casting across the board allowed for a showcase of fine voices and delightful choreography. Musical director Ben Stefanoff conducts his all-star band from upstage, exposing a toe-tapping score. Choreographers Rachel Dow and Rebekah Stonelake should be applauded for their innovative work; bringing out the best from their performers in eye-catching numbers.
Gavin Gianci is fabulous as he croons his way through his role as Frank’s father; allowing us to witness his slow demise added a sentimentality to an almost unreal plot. Fine performances were also delivered by Shelley Crooks, Georgia Broomhall and A passionate ensemble rounded out the cast.
If I had to make a slight criticism, it is that stage hands need to be aware of their sight lines, watching cast being handed props was disappointing. Slight technical faults did nothing to dampen my enthusiasm for this wonderful production.
Gavin Cianci, Shelley Crooks and Jason Benson (photo Mark Anolak)
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