May 28, 2014 — AD Players


Adorable, Delightful, Geographically Correct Crickets

May 28, 2014 — Lately, I’ve been seeing some shows where there are such high moments, gnashing of teeth, struggling for pure truth, clawing to keep characters living, that sometimes the moments in between the highs seem more like walking or talking, than elevated life, or even just life. A.D. Players’ “Over the River & Through the Woods.” is not one of those shows. If you can get over some of the accents fading in and out and acting styles just a little less than naturalism, what you might find, as did I, is a very well crafted show.

The actors are delightful and adorable and inhabit the characters in light and funny ways, like a television show that you’re really having fun watching, but with a live audience that’s laughing too. The consistently good timing makes the funny lines zing and the sad ones resonate. The technical aspects of the show are all at a very high level of professionalism. As a symbol of this level of technical proficiency, I offer the possibility that the cricket sounds in the gentle evening scenes just might have been from geographically correct crickets. The house is friendly. The lighting and stage management are good and the little couch was a funnier set choice than a larger couch might have been. The lines are understandable. The play is well-enough written to carry the audience along for lots of laughs in the first act and some more laughs in the second. Rather than seeing some walking and talking between some life-changingly-memorable moments, the whole level of theatricality and acting was consistently very high throughout.

If the actors are very accomplished in a technically professional theater setting. They were just plain wonderful. The youngsters were a little bit blown off the stage by the grandparents, but they were really good too.

I can’t wait to see what these folks do with Godspell.

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