By Lucas Proctor
It’s hard to live up to such an iconic show as Singin’ in the Rain but Bluffdale Arts Advisory Board has a production at South Hills Middle School in Riverton that you shouldn’t miss
One of the first things to catch your eyes is the exciting costuming. There are colorful flapper dresses, fancy gowns, and suits and vests galore. Props to the costume team to get such a large cast so cohesive and colorfully costumed.
Growing up, I idolized Gene Kelly and know that playing him you have some big shoes to fill. Don Lockwood (Jonathan Cooper) is spot on and exudes the debonair spirit of an actor from that era. Cooper delightfully dances his way through the stage all the way to the title song “Singin’ in the Rain.” At one point in the show, the joke is that Lina Lamont (Ariana Bagley) is a triple threat because she can’t dance, act, or sing. Cooper is a triple threat but because he can do all three.
Bagley is also hilarious in her portrayal of the fluffy self-centered star (in the cinema firmament) and is apparently a professional costume changer. Bagley is in a different dress every time she comes on stage, further adding to all her scenes. Though portraying a character who is a ‘triple threat’ Bagley does have singing chops that she shows off in her solo “What’s Wrong with Me?”.
I always believe that the best (and potentially worst) part of any show is the humor. Who better to portray that than Cosmo Brown (Tanner Ayre)? He has a smile on his face from the first minute he walks on stage until the curtain call. Ayre kept pulling out the stops by playing the piano, singing while dancing, and popping up in places you least expect him. Ayre and Cooper really shine in their silly duet “Moses Supposes” and keep the energy high to the last note. Vocal Coach Eric Peterson has created lovely melodies with his singers.
The most endearing part of the show is Emma Tolman’s portrayal of Kathy Selden. Tolman is a great match to Cooper’s debonair and the chemistry Is magic. Their first duet, “Stepped Out of a Dream” has all the classic elements of stage magic and pulls you right in. Tolman dances on the stage like it was what she was born to do. Her voice is delightful and has an air of maturity about it that is a rare gem in community theatre.
My favorite number in the show is the trio performing “Good Morning.” You can’t help but smile as the choreography (Melinda Severn, Kerry Severn, Monique Welker, Tanner Garner, Alaina Stone) is extremely entertaining with an appropriate number of nods to the original. The supporting cast Is very fun and notable roles are R.F. Simpson (Clark Fox) and Roscoe Dexter (Jared Savern.) Directors Kelsha Peterson and Laura Garner have a production they should be proud of–it’s a lovely, fun show filled with familiar tunes and fun dance numbers.
The entire production exudes color and pizazz with splendid costumes (Chelsea Bush, Sue Clark, Laura Garner)and bold choreography. This is not a show you want to miss so go out and support your local theatre.
Bluffdale Arts Advisory Board presents Singin’ in the Rain by Betty Comden and Adolf Green
South Hills Middle School 13508 South 4000 West, Riverton, UT 84065
August 3-5 7:30 PM Saturday matinee 1:00 PM
General Admission $8 Each, Seniors or Groups Of 4 or More $7 EACH