Here are our Top Scene Stealers for the week ending June 21, 2014. Congrats to all our honorees!
(1) Aurora Beckett, as Jojo, singing “It’s Possible” in Seussical at Montgomery Playhouse Summer Dinner Theatre.
“As Jojo’s parents try to cope with his vivid imagination, Beckett sings “It’s Possible.” The entire scene is beautifully staged. Beckett sits in a large tub, and several of the other performers move it around stage as she sings about her imagination turning the tub into the magical world of McElligot’s Pool. Beckett sings beautifully, and her storytelling by song infuses life into the unfolding scene. ” Vanessa Terghasi
(2) Jim Reiter as Gordon, Delivering His Second Act Opening Dialogue in Dead Man’s Cellphone at Colonial Players.
“Gordon (Jim Reiter) steals the show. While the show is about his character there is precious little stage time for the deceased character, not counting the first scene wherein his corpse sits lifeless in the café. Reiter gives a genuinely grounded, almost rapturous monologue at the top of second act that is the epitome of theatrical expression. The entire monologue is delivered with bite and intention; Reiter having a commanding stage presence that has every eye in the audience captivated by what he has to say. He lands jokes, makes points, and invites the audience into his words without diminishing the fourth wall. This story becomes a real moment in time, relived as if he were experiencing it for us for the first time. When his physicality and voice change toward the end of the scene it is emotional disturbing to experience. A rousing performance all-round, despite his limited two-scene appearance, Reiter brings the story home on a relatable note to all.” Amanda Gunther
(3) Bob Schwartz, as Franz Liebkind, singing and Dancing “Der Guten Tag Hop Clop” at The Producers at Sandy Spring Theatre Group.
“From the moment Bob Schwartz entered the stage as Franz Liebkind, I knew he was going to be fantastic. He showcased beautiful vocals during his ballad “In Old Bavaria,” but his physical acting abilities during “Der Guten Tag Hop Clop” were phenomenal. I could not stop laughing as he skipped around the stage singing complete nonsense, while delivering the song with complete seriousness.” Lauren Katz
(4) Ryan Silverman, as Terry, Singing “A Private Conversation” in Side Show at The Kennedy Center.
“[Ryan] Silverman “brought the house down” with prolonged applause in his soul-searching and explosive lament “A Private Conversation”; Terry’s cry of need was emphasized by a shadowy-silhouetted Daisy (Padgett) who was lit exquisitely in the background by acclaimed Lighting Designers Jules Fisher and Peggy Eisenhauer.” David Friscic
(5) Stephen Gregory Smith, as Trekkie Monster, Singing “The Internet is For Porn” at Avenue Q at Olney Theatre Center.
“Trekkie Monster (Stephen Gregory Smith) is a big ball of loveable, adorable, smutty fur. Smith bears down and adds gravel to his voice when playing the sex-addicted puppet, creating the expected sound from the big furry fella. Truly making the role his own, Smith has a priceless moment during “The Internet is for Porn” where he pans to and plays the audience. The result was thunderous applause and laughter. Managing to not only speak in Trekkie’s voice-but sing clearly in it as well-is an effort well worth rewarding.” Amanda Gunther
(6) George Willis Singing “I Am the Very Model of a Modern Major General” at The Pirates of Penzance at Victorian Lyric Opera Company.
“That leads us to the scene stealer of the evening Major General Stanley, played endearingly by George Willis. Willis is a delight to see on stage, and his performance is true to the traditional slap-stick style of Gilbert and Sullivan. His rendering of the much parodied “I Am the Very Model of a Modern Major General,” is sidesplitting.” Anne Vandercook
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