The MET under the direction of Rebecca Kemp made good use of the stage and facilities of the Arts Theatre to present a realistic 1950’s New York City. The drop-downs allowed for quick scene changes and continuity that is necessary for this production. The opening was a little slow and convoluted but set the scene for all that was to follow. This built to a crescendo in act two that earned the appreciation of the opening night audience.
The cast was well chosen commencing with the three street-smart New Yorkers of Nicely-Nicely Johnson played by Ben Todd as the pseudo Leader, Benny Southstreet played by Thomas Sheldon and Rusty Charlie played by Joel Amos. These three were able to portray the camaraderie that existed on the streets. They were able to show their singing ability particularly as a trio with their rendition of ‘Guys and Dolls’. The solo by Nicely-Nicely ‘Sit Down You’re Rockin’ the Boat’ and the ensemble was memorable.
From the Save a Soul Mission group came Sarah Brown played by Chloe Dunstan. She was enthralling with her voice highlighted when performing solo with ‘If I Were a Bell’ and the numerous duets throughout the play.
Sarah’s love interest was the charming slightly unscrupulous Sky Masterson played by Daniel Fleming who never lost a bet but was finally undone by Sarah. Their love-hate relationship was highlighted with songs ‘I’ll Know’ and ‘I’ve Never Been in Love before. Sky also led the guys with the readily recognisable ‘Luck Be a Lady Tonight’.
The fourteen year engagement between Selena Britz as Miss Adelaide and Robin Schmelzkopf as Nathan Detroit teemed perfectly and complimented each other’s acting and singing. The Bronx twang inflection in their voices confirmed the locale of the play and the characters they were playing. Their rendition of ‘Sue Me’ added to their complicated relationship.
The Hot Box Dancers choreographed by Carmel Vistoli added colour with their performance particularly in Havana.
Of the very capable seven support roles Barry Hill as Arvide Abernathy shone with his presentation of ‘More I Cannot Wish You’.
The final number by the ensemble and the finale by the whole cast were other highlights of the show and a credit to the Musical Director Jacqui Maynard and the seventeen musicians who made up the orchestra and played flawlessly throughout.
The set design by Rebecca Kemp was made to look simple but obviously had a lot of thought put into it to make places readily recognisable. The under ground scene is a good example.
The very large production team all contributed to make the show work as it should and are a credit to The Metropolitan Musical Theatre Company of S.A.