"Hair" - A Review
I just got back from seeing the opening night performance of “Hair,” and I have to say that if you don’t see this one, you’re missing a fantastic show. Marshall’s Department of Theatre has been putting on topnotch shows for a long time - and I’ve seen a lot of them - but I don’t know if I’ve ever enjoyed one more than this.
The show kicks off with a hilarious, memorable entrance for the band, and wastes no time launching into the terrific score, which includes songs like “Aquarius,” “Good Morning Starshine,” and “Easy to be Hard.” It’s billed as “The American Tribal Love-Rock Musical,” and it’s tough to single out performers, since it’s very much an ensemble piece - but I have to give credit to a few actors, like Ryan Hardiman, who plays Berger. He manages to be fierce, loving, playful and intense (sometimes all at the same time), and the show is custom-built for his powerful voice. Then there’s Autumn Seavey, who plays Sheila. Like Ryan, she is an amazing talent, with an incredible voice and a commanding stage presence. Chris Ferris plays Claude, and he also turns in a strong performance in a difficult, sympathetic role.
Really, the entire cast deserves accolades; Ted Rose as the towering Woof is sweet, funny and has a great voice; Jennifer Scott is another wonderful singer with great stage presence; Nick Reynolds turns in an excellent performance; I could go on and on - oh, and special kudos to the scene-stealing cameo by Margaret Meade and her husband - I haven’t laughed so hard in years.
In addition to the actors, the directors and the production crew deserve a curtain call of their own - I am in awe of the amazing job they did in resurrecting the ‘60s and planting it on the stage. The costumes, the set design, the lighting - all were phenomenal. Also a tip of the hat to yet another excellent job by music director Mark Smith and his band - nothing beats a live orchestra.
Now, I have to say that if you’re easily offended, you might want to give the show a miss. There’s some vulgar language, drug use is depicted and there are a few jokes that might offend. But if you’re looking for a show full of energy, great music and the area’s top performers, you owe it to yourself to see “Hair.”
By the way, Friday and Saturday’s shows are sold out - so that leaves a few tickets left for Thursday and Sunday’s show. You’ve been warned!