Posted April 8, 2014
By NATALIE GOENAGA
Due to economic reasons Miracle Mile’s Actor’s Playhouse has had to cut back to one major musical production a year, but this year’s choice was a supremely silly hit!
The Actor’s Playhouse edition of 2005 Tony-winning musical comedy “Monty Python’s Spamalot” is a comedic journey that has the audience laughing all night.
Director David Arisco chose a terrifically funny 20-person cast filled with raw local talent to bring King Arthur and his Knights of the Round Table to life. The cast showcases a vast array of talents and personalities as many play multiple roles.
Gary Marachek plays the perfect King Arthur. His facial expressions and stocky appearance make him the right amount funny without going over the top, which is so easily to do in this show.
Jim Ballard shows his many faces as a muscular but feminine Sir Lancelot, a French taunter, a knight who says “nii,” and Tim the Enchanter. Shane Tanner plays the vainly noble knight Galahad, a ridiculous Black Knight, and Prince Herbert’s father. Gabriel Zenone plays a cool Sir Robin and Wayne LeGette plays Sir Belvedere, Mrs. Galahad, and Lancelot’s squire.
Jose Luaces was truly impressive playing five different characters including: Prince Herbert, the narrator, and the peasant who is “Not Dead Yet” by the plague. Paul Louis is a hoot as the king’s loyal, but not so appreciated servant Patsy and Lindsay Forgey is the perfect comedic diva as The Lady of the Lake.
The ensemble and lead actors were crisp and hilarious dancing and hitting every beat in Ron Hutchins’ choreography. Hutchins’ choreography fit the joyousness and wittiness of the show perfectly and truly helped to bring it to life. Musical director David Nagy has a small band to work with, but their execution was flawless for every number.
Costume designer, Ellis Tillman, was truly impressive especially with all the quick changes many of the actors had to make throughout the entirety of the show. Each costume was suited perfectly for each amusing character that wore them.
“Monty Python’s Spamalot” is a comedic musical based on the 1975 non-musical film featuring the comedy troupe from the BBC television series. The show follows the quest of King Arthur and a band of his dysfunctional knights on a search to find the Holy Grail. The quest leads the men through many Monty Python bits, many parody numbers, and finally to Las Vegas — or should I say Camelot.
No one Broadway production or person is safe from being made a comedic spectacle in the show and Arisco did a fine job alongside his cast of adding a few quirky bits of their own making it stand out from the original Broadway production.
One of the only downfalls to this local production is the tiny and frankly, cheesy set. The cast, costumes and overall production are larger than life, but the set is inferior to the rest of the quality and caliber of show. It doesn’t fill the stage to its full potential and is a bit tacky. Those in charge of the lights did a great job, but at some points in the show actors who stood near the front of the stage got a bit lost in the lighting.
The Actor’s Playhouse version of “Monty Python’s Spamalot” truly proved to be housed with unparalleled talent right here in the South Florida community. The production takes Old English and gives it a fresh and funny home on Miracle Mile.
- Actor’s Playhouse at the Miracle Mile Theatre located at 280 Miracle Mile Coral Gables, Fla.
- “Monty Python’s Spamalot” playing through March 30 every Wednesday-Saturday at 8 p.m. and 3 p.m. on Sundays.
- Tickets prices: $15-$55.
- For more information visit actorsplayhouse.org or call 305-441-4181.