Onstage this month at Stage West Community Playhouse
The comedy musical SOMETHING ROTTEN! will be performed from Thursday, Jan. 14, to Sunday, Jan. 24, at Stage West Community Playhouse, 8390 Forest Oaks Blvd., in Spring Hill.
"An original musical comedy with a book by John O'Farrell and Karey Kirkpatrick and music and lyrics by Karey and Wayne Kirkpatrick," read a Stage West description. "Set in 1595, the story follows the Bottom brothers, Nick and Nigel, who struggle to find success in the theatrical world, as they compete with the wild popularity of their contemporary William Shakespeare."
Opening on Broadway and performed around the world, this Tony-award winning production claims a major fan in Stage West director Jennifer Garcia.
"I saw the musical and fell in love with it," she said. "Such a great story, and so relevant. I knew we had to bring it to the Stage West stage."
Although set in the Renaissance and featuring William Shakespeare as a major character, Something Rotten! is a tale for all times, said Garcia.
"This is a great story, as the grass is always greener on the other side," she said.
And in this case, funnier, as the audience follows the Bottom brothers as they seek to outdo and predate Shakespeare's production of Hamlet with their own blockbuster, Omelette!
Garcia feels that the tunes and laughs provided through this creative production are much needed on today's theatre scene--and, for that matter, by modern audiences.
"In the history of theatre, and since the days of (Shakespeare's) Globe Theatre, the musical comedy has provided escapism," she explained. "And now more than ever, the call for the arts is greater than it's ever been."
Something Rotten! answers the call with nearly 30 musical interludes, many comical interludes (blending elements of slapstick and breaking the fourth wall), authentic period costumes, and exquisite sets.
"Our theatrical sets include a theatre piece that opens and closes like a book," said Garcia. "Our costumes were made by hand to fit the time period, and show stunning detail and craftsmanship."
And is the case with any modern theatrical production, safety matters just as much as sets and scenes. Garcia reveals that auditions and rehearsals for Something Rotten! were conducted with masking and social distancing measures in place, and limited numbers of people present in the cast and during individual rehearsals; and that the production itself will be performed before a large main stage theatre that will be filled to 50 percent capacity, with cleaning measures and masking in place and sanitizer available.
Yet another component of Something Rotten!, said Garcia, is the enjoyment that this production brings to audiences and cast members alike.
"The cast had fun rehearsing, and they did a great job," she said. "I couldn't ask for more."
Director – Jennifer Rose Garcia
Music Director – Dixie Lay
Co-Music Director – Carly Rafferty
Choreographer - Jennifer Ellis
Stage Manager – Chris Hubner
Assistant Stage Manager – Robert Kordon
Production Coordinator – Brenda Rooney
Set Design – Tim Rooney
Set Construction – Tim Rooney, Jay Garcia
Props – Oliver Sprague, Robert Kordon, Joy Evans
Light Design – Nicole Moore
Light Operation – Nicole Moore, Michelle Root
Sound Design – Lynda Benson
Sound Operation – Lynda Benson
Costumier – Cindy Smith, Anadulina Pagan, Brittany Gonzalez
Backstage Crew – Joy Evans, Jennifer Ellis, Lexi Sindelar, Veronica Carrion, Beth Brannon Evans
Spot Lights – Elliana Troy Gorecki
CAST OF CHARACTERS:
Nick Bottom – Jamey Alexander Feshold
Nigel Bottom – Anthony Agnelli
William Shakespeare – Patrick Gonzalez
Bea Bottom – Brittany Gonzalez
Thomas Nostradamus – Trevor Lloyd
Portia – Paris Seaver
Brother Jeremiah – Brady Lay
Lady Clapham- Savannah Ray Smith
Shylock / Master of Justice– Paul Wade
Minstrel – Jay Garcia
Robin – Dylan Odom
Tom Snout - Marcos Trujillo
Snug - Gregory Harper
Beth Brannen Evans
To buy tickets for the upcoming Stage West Community Playhouse production of Something Rotten!, visit https://stagewestflorida.com/buy-tickets/.