‘Xanadu’ at Landless Theatre Company by Mike Spain

Landless Theatre Company’s production of the musical Xanadu at the Frederick Cultural Arts Center provides an evening of fun, and exciting, and crazy entertainment. You can upgrade your ticket for $5 more and join into the chaotic fun complete with bubbles, confetti, and other props for a unique theater experience. If you sit near the front in the intimate theatre space there is a good chance you will be dragged into the action.

“I’m Alive”: (L-R) Terri Magers (Melpomene), Ally Jenkins (Calliope),Carey Rausch (Polyhmnia), Maura Lacy (Clio),Jacob Waeyaert (Terpsicore), Tim Eichelberger (Bob), and Karilee Grossnickle (Euterpe). Photo by Amanda M. Williams.

The strength of this production is the cast. Director Melissa Baughman pulls out the best of the cast in this show. Derek Tatum plays the air-headed dreamer Sonny Malone with goofiness and is easily the best skater in the production. One of his best scenes is where he stands up to Zeus (Andrew Lloyd Baughman) and demonstrates his love for Clio (Maura Lacy).

Maura Lacy has a wonderful voice which she demonstrates on “I’m Alive” and “Suddenly,” which she sings with Tatum. Another not to miss moment is her performance of “Fool.” She didn’t look 100% confident on the skates but that should improve as the production goes along.

Andrew Lloyd Baughman who was busy behinds the scene as the choreographer and music director puts in a solid performance as the heartbroken, dollar-hungry business man Danny Maguire and the divine Zeus. He displays his singing talents with Maura on “Whenever you’re Away From Me” and with Derek on “Dancin’”  His acting shines portraying the heartbroken, dollar hungry business man of Danny.

Jacob Waeyaert and David Weiner play several roles in the musical. Portraying Clio’s sisters in drag – were some of the production’s most humorous scenes. Teri Magers (Melpomene) and Ally Jenkins (Calliope) are dynamite on their musical numbers of “Evil Woman” and “Strange Magic.” Ally’s facial expressions during “Evil Woman” are hysterical and will have you howling, as will Tm Eichelberger, who is at his best as Bob and Centaur. Tim started the laughs when he dropped his broom and quit sweeping up the confetti in the opening scene. Karilee Grossnickle, Momo Nakamura, and Carey Raush also contribute to the hilarity and craziness.

The set is very sparse and at most the audience gets some silver streamers on some boards and a small Xanadu sign, but this choice does give the cast plenty of room for skating, dancing, which sometimes breaks into craziness. Melissa Baughman and Carey Raush contributed the colorful costumes.They do a wonderful job  dressing Derek Tatum in early 80’s style complete with bandana headband, outfit, even his shoes had him transported back in time. Danny Maguire looked sharp and the red suit was colorful.

The talented and hard-working performers shine in Landless Theatre Company’s production of Xanadu. Some of the scenes push the line between total craziness and complete chaos.The end result is a musical that turns into a fun and an honest good time. Skate right over to Xanadu and laugh yourself silly!

“Don’t Walk Away”:(L-R) Jacob Waeyaert (Terpsicore), Terri Magers (Melpomene), Derek Tatum (Sonny Malone), Carey Rausch (Polyhmnia), and Ally Jenkins (Calliope). Photo by Amanda M. Williams.

Running Time: Approximately an hour and forty-five minutes, with no intermission.

Xanadu plays through October 27, 2012 at the Frederick Cultural Arts Center – 15 West Patrick Street, in Frederick, Maryland. Tickets and more information can be found online.



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