Monday, June 13, 2011

Little Shop of Horrors

Over the weekend I went to see Little Shop of Horrors at the Cumberland County Playhouse. I'm going to sum it all up in two sentences: This show was every bit the cheesy B-flick that the movie version was. And that is a good thing. :)

The movie version came out in 1986. A cult classic, I saw it growing up and remember laughing all the way through it. As far as I can remember, it was also my first introduction to Rick Moranis. It's cheesy, ridiculous, and not the least bit scary. The Playhouse's version of the musical is also cheesy, ridiculous, and not the least bit scary. It's a spoof from start to finish and you can't help but laugh. When I left, my face was a little sore from smiling so much.

Cast as Seymore and Audrey, real life couple Greg and Lindy Pendzick played their roles to near perfection. Lindy's Audrey had that endearing, Betty Boop-like charm, while Greg's Seymore was perfectly awkward and adorable. The girl group trio of Chiffon, Ronnette and Crystal were played by Leila Nelson, Alison Girtz, and Joann Coleman. Girtz and Coleman were making their Cumberland County Playhouse debut, but both came to the show with an amazing resume. All three of the actresses were fantastic, and their costumes were my favorite in the entire show.

Cumberland County Playhouse's go-to man for comedy, Jason Ross, played numerous roles, including abusive dentist/boyfriend, Orin. As always, his knack for comedy was amazing. He could lay it on thick and have you rolling in the floor with laughter in no time flat.

The voice of Audrey II, the giant man-eating plant was Michael Ruff. His voice was fantastic for the plant. The puppeteers were Austin Price and Chaz Sanders and I have to say, they did a fantastic job as well. Audrey II was amazing and hilarious.

The set was as colorful as the costumes, with Mushnik's flower show edged in 1950s pink, and the backdrop a cartoonish version of Skid Row. Both were fun and fit the feel of the show well.
One thing I really noticed about the show was the young audience. The past several times I've seen shows at the Playhouse I could have been the youngest person there by several decades. This audience was younger by far. Sure, there were older people there as well, but I saw several people around my age, a handful of teenagers, and some families. It's a fun show and I think it is more attractive to a younger audience than the more classic, older musicals.

Check out the video below (found on the Cumberland County Playhouse's facebook page) for a scene from the show. And then go buy tickets! The show runs through August 6th.


  1. Thanks for posting this, Cara! I only wish the full orchestra had been available on the day we taped this.

    Here's a scoop for the Country Girl/Theatre Geek blog (we haven't even announced the full cast here at the Playhouse)... the three Urchins all play key roles in Chicago: Leila (in turquoise) will choreograph, Joann (in yellow) will play Velma, and Ali (in, um... what is that, mauve?) will play Roxie. I'm every bit as excited about directing it as I was about Little Shop!

  2. You just made my day, I think. :)