I thoroughly enjoyed the opening night of “Into the Woods” by the “Croissant” cast.
This wonderful musical, which combines several classical fairy tales into one exciting story, was cleverly written by James Lapine complemented by Stephen Sondheim’s beautiful music and lyrics. There was comedy, morality, philosophy and fun all in one great package.
Damien Lee ably played the Baker, complemented by Montana Vincent who was very entertaining as the Baker’s Wife.
Lucy Newman commanded the stage every time she appeared on it, as the Witch, wicked or otherwise. Millie Brake had a beautiful voice for her role as Cinderella. Ava Hughes played a convincing Little Red. I especially loved her tantrum!
All the other members of the cast did a great job. But there are just too many to name individually.
The outstanding Production Team was composed of Serena Cann as the Director, Louis Cann the Musical Director and Conductor of the 13 piece orchestra and Benji Riggs as Character Coach. Benji did a great job of coaching the characters! Serena was also the Choreographer. The Producers were Emma Riggs and Kerreane Sarti. Emma Riggs also did a great job as Microphone technician as there were no problems with the mics that I could hear. The follow spot operator Adam Rolling seemed to miss a few cues but in general was spot on. Luke Bartholomew’s rainbow mood lighting was very good.
Wardrobe coordinators Kylie Mobbs and Linda Cook did a great job with the numerous costumes and wigs.
Set and scenic art design by Raymond Cullen, Serena and Louis Cann was simple but very effective. Special note were the stark trees (I am not sure if they were triangular Periaktoi Sets or squares?) which were smoothly and cleverly moved around to suit the mood and action of each scene. They were also used by several characters very effectively. Props were excellent, especially the cow, the birds and the horse which were sourced or created by Serena Cann and Louis Cann and Lochie Daniel.
The witch’s make up was superb! Her hooded black cape and Little Red’s two capes were beautifully made.
The unique Into the Woods Orchestra was, at times, a bit too loud, or maybe voices a bit soft, so we couldn’t hear the words of the songs clearly. Special effects were very good. The squishiness and the knocking added to the atmosphere! Special note to the silhouette scene of the Wolf, Granny and Little Red! And the audience reaction was very enthusiastic – they clapped and cheered just about every song!
We laughed at the comic antics of the two princes, especially their 2 “Agony” songs. They were very well performed by Henry Hasler as Cinderella’s Prince and Harry Ince as Rapunzel’s Prince – very funny and very clever. The other duets and multiple singing harmonies in many of the songs were beautifully rendered.
We thought that the Wolf’s costume was a little bit under done and could have created a stronger image of a wolf, although Matthew Wright’s deep growly voice created a wicked mood!
So if you want to go Into the Woods and see a seductive collection of fairy tales go along to Star Theatres. It’s only on a couple more times on Saturday the 30th of April.