By Harvey Schmidt
Book & Lyrics by Tom Jones
Directed by Jon Ciccarelli and Paula Galloway
March 3-19, 2000
Hudson Shakespeare decided to kick of their 2000 season with a bang by producing the company's first musical. For this venture the company chose the long running show, The Fantasticks. The play tells the basic story of Boy (Dave Allan) meets Girl (Ann Romero) literally and their fathers Hucklebee (Andrew Foley) and Bellowmy (R.S. Call) who are supposedly dead set against it the match. All the while in actuality the fathers are dying for their kids to hitch up. Narrated and presided over by the mysterious El Gallo (Jaime Fernandez) and with his sidekick known simply as the Mute (Grace Brown), the show opens with the Boy and Girl living side by side and separated by a wall. The fathers conspire with El Gallo to get the two together. In a grand gesture, El Gallo supposedly puts the couple in danger allowing for the Boy to rescue his damsel in distress. El Gallo enlists the help of an old actor Henry (Charles J. Roby) and his side kick Mortimer (Duncan Pflaster), who make their entrance through a magical trunk, to assist him in this grand charade.
While the Boy is "victorious" and the couple look to live happily ever after, things don't always prove to be so simple. As both go their separate ways and taste life outside their known worlds, both come to realize that things weren't so bad back where they started. Taking the old formula young love, coupling it with common themes and peppering it with Shakespearean illusions, Schmidt's story and Jones' lyrics beautifully convey the themes of youth, home and simpler times. Held at OLC Victory Hall, this late winter production was one of the more popular HSC offerings.
Above, a scene from the father's setting up the crime with El Gallo in which the Boy appears victorious.
OLC Victory Hall – Jersey City, NJ
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