Crossville Chronicle, Crossville, TN

Things To Do

June 28, 2012

REVIEW: A toe-tapping good showing of 'The Music Man '

CROSSVILLE — Opening night of The Music Man at the Cumberland County Playhouse found many of the audience whistling “Seventy-six Trombones” as we walked to our vehicles. Ron Murphy, as conductor and pianist, leads the nine piece pit orchestra through a rousing performance of the 19 toe-tapping songs by Meredith Wilson that are central to this show. There are a number of patter songs requiring absolute timing of orchestra and vocalists. They never miss a beat.    

Leila Nelson has assumed the roles of director and choreographer. Your reviewer was present in 1997 when Leila, then age eight, marched as a River City kid. What talents she has honed in the intervening 15 years! Dance lessons and performance opportunities have abounded. In recent times, we have seen Nelson’s acting and choreographic skills on stage as her professional abilities have grown. Fine job, Leila.

We welcome back Britt Hancock who plays Harold Hill with just the proper touch of sleaze. Hill, a traveling salesman, has a suitcase full of promises. Hancock has the vocal and acting ability to convince us that he can do anything. We begin to trust him. In fact, like the townspeople, we almost believe he will produce a marching band with all the River City kids playing instruments. Porter Anderson brings his amazing acting, singing, dancing talents to the role of Marcellus Washburn, the only person who knows the background of Harold Hill. We hope to see more of Anderson.    

Lindy Pendzick portrays Marian Paroo, the librarian, as stiff and cold. We, Playhouse regulars, who have loved her as Maria in Sound of Music, Audrey in Little Shop of Horrors and have laughed with her as May in the current production of See Rock City, can scarcely believe our eyes. Lindy Pendzick successfully portrays not only the librarian but also a concerned daughter, a loving sister, as well as a woman who is accepting the possibility of love in her life for the first time. She depicts all those relationships with consummate skill. Her voice is especially lovely as she sings the wistful, “My White Knight.” Her voice blends hauntingly with Hancock’s as they sing “Till There Was You.”

On opening night, Pleasant Hill elementary student, Christopher Figueroa, starred as young Winthrop Paroo. He is a lisping youngster, mourning the death of his father, fearful of what life might bring. Figueroa represents each of the emotional stages of Winthrop’s life as he begins to respond to the attention given him by Hill. He sees himself affirmed for qualities no one else has seen and he did not know he had. Jonathan Tison, a homeschooled student who will be in sixth grade in the fall, alternates in the role of Winthrop.       

Mayor Shinn and his amazing wife Eulalie are played by the incomparable Jason Ross and Carol Irvin. Irvin is a riot with her headdress as the choir director and again as the Indian maiden. (Congratulations to properties manager Allyson Namishia.). Blaklee Garrett and DeAnna Etchinson alternate in the role of the Shinn daughter Zaneeta. We meet elder daughter Gracie in the person of either Katey Dailey or Crystal-Marie Alberson. Chaz Sanders and Cory Clark alternate in the role of Tommy Djilas, the town’s bad lad attracted to (of all people) Gracie Shinn. Surely participating in a marching band cannot reform Tommy. Or can it? 

The River City School Board, members Quinn Cason, Austin Price, Greg Pendzick and John Dobbratz, who question the credentials of Hill, morph into a fine barbershop quartet. Children are not the only ones in whom Hill sees unexpected areas of talent.

Lauren Marshall, currently playing Vera Sanders in the Adventure Theater production of Smoke on the Mountain, is seen as Mrs. Parro, mother of Marian and Winthrop. She is the piano teacher encouraging the talents of Amaryllis, played alternately by Emily Graham and Emery Smith.    

This is a cast of some 75 talented and dedicated people. Several are eight and nine-year-olds and many are teenagers. There are adults whose talents have graced the stage many times. For others, this is the first appearance at the Playhouse. Assistant directors Britt Hancock and Weslie Webster have aided in the coordination of this huge cast. A big thanks to all who give their time and talent to bring us theatrical treats such as this.

Many more persons deserve special mention for their singing, dancing and acting abilities shared with the audience. As in the proverbial marching band, each and every one is important and essential to the full realization of the performance. Suffice it to say that a fine performance awaits you. No matter how many times I have seen The Music Man, I am grateful to be able to tap my toes along with those on stage. Do call for your tickets and encourage your friends, neighbors, and visitors to join in the fun. 

     

1
Text Only
Things To Do
  • front page news.jpg "Front Page News" held over in Dayton

    Cumberland County Playhouse and its producing partner The Scopes Festival in Dayton, TN, have added three more performances of "Front Page News," the newly adapted, historically accurate play with music, currently being staged in the historic “monkey trial” courtroom in Dayton’s Rhea County Courthouse.  Additional shows of the new work are Saturday at 2:30 and 7:30 p.m., and the final show Sunday at 2:30 p.m. All times are EDT.

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • granville.jpg Scarcrow Walk set Oct. 4-31 in Granville

    The Second Annual Granville Scarecrow Walk will be in Historic Granville on Oct. 4 through Oct. 31.

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • Conlee Color HI.jpg Conlee to perform at Palace

    John Conlee is a lot like the songs of which he sings. He lives a domestic life with his wife Gale and three children, Rebecca, Jessica and Johnny. During the past two decades, Conlee has achieved a level of success that he has sustained by simply being himself and by making records that the listening public can relate to. He is a gifted entertainer, but he’s not into the glitz and hype of the entertainment world. He’d rather spend his “off the road” time working on his 32 acre farm outside of Nashville or engaging in his woodworking and gunsmithing hobbies.

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • City Lites.jpg 'Friday Night Air' features City Lites

    The “Friday Night Air” summer concert series continues Friday at the Spirit Broadband amphitheater in downtown Crossville with the City Lites Band. They are a very popular four-piece band from Crossville that has performed throughout Tennessee and the Southeast for more than three decades. Their lineup features Marty Gibson on guitar and vocals, Flavy Miller on bass and vocals, Glenn Holverson on saxophones and Wade England on drums. The song list includes a wide variety of musical styles from swing, country, '50’s and '60’s, rock and more. Something for everyone to enjoy! The performance is free to the public and begins at 6 p.m. and is sponsored by the Historic Palace Theatre and the city of Crossville.

    July 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • Gypsy, Front Page News open this weekend

    They're gearing up for a very exciting week both at the Cumberland County Playhouse and at the Rhea County Courthouse in Dayton!

    July 17, 2014

  • LexVinDance260_2.jpg Vintage Dance Society opens PAART season

    The Performing Arts Alliance of Rural Tennessee (PAART) is pleased to announce the first event in it’s 2014-15 season: the Lexington Vintage Dance Society will perform "Downton Abbey Era: The Titanic to the Jazz Age" in period costumes. This performance will take place Oct. 3 at 7 p.m. at the Palace Theatre in Crossville.

    July 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • gypsy hombres.jpg Gypsy Hombres take stage Sunday

    For years, there has been a persistent legend in Nashville about a crazy gypsy ‘Fiddler on the Roof” who dances as he plays the violin on the roof of his Victorian house. Cumberland County Playhouse will prove the legend is 100 percent true as The Gypsy Hombres take the stage Sunday.

    July 10, 2014 1 Photo

  • 'Gypsy' opens July 18 at CCP

    Beginning July 18, everything’s coming up roses as the Playhouse brings one of the greatest American musicals of all time to life… “Gypsy”! From the unforgettable first notes of its legendary overture to the final white hot spotlight, “Gypsy” is considered by many to be “the best musical ever,” as it tells the story of the archetypal stage mother, Rose, and her daughters, June and Louise.

    July 10, 2014

  • wildman.jpg ‘Wild Man’ takes Palace stage Aug. 23

    Look out, Crossville, here comes the coolest guy in town and his name is Rafael R. Soriano, also known by fans everywhere as “Wild Man,” but he calls himself “Wild Man Billy Ralph!”

    July 10, 2014 1 Photo

  • KOTR Steven Whitson Picture.jpg 'An Evening with Steven Whitson' to benefit Kids on the Rise

    ds on the Rise will be hosting a fund-raising concert Aug. 2 at the Palace Theatre. The local non-profit agency will present An Evening with Steven Whitson.

    July 2, 2014 2 Photos

AP and the Gulf Oil Spill
AP Video
Raw: Air Algerie Flight 5017 Wreckage Virginia Governor Tours Tornado Aftermath Judge Faces Heat Over Offer to Help Migrant Kids Kerry: No Deal Yet on 7-Day Gaza Truce Kangaroo Goes Missing in Oklahoma More M17 Bodies Return, Sanctions on Russia Grow Gaza Residents Mourn Dead Amid Airstrikes Raw: Deadly Tornado Hits Virginia Campground Ohio State Marching Band Chief Fired After Probe Raw: Big Rig Stuck in Illinois Swamp Cumberbatch Brings 'Penguins' to Comic-Con Raw: Air Algerie Crash Site in Mali Power to Be Restored After Wash. Wildfire Crashed Air Algerie Plane Found in Mali Israel Mulls Ceasefire Amid Gaza Offensive In Case of Fire, Oxygen Masks for Pets Mobile App Gives Tour of Battle of Atlanta Sites
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide