Eleven Charlotte-area high school students are competing in the new theater criticism category of the Blumey Awards, the Blumenthal Performing Arts’ annual musical theater awards program (read more about that here.) Each student writes three reviews; the following is one entry:
I often become frustrated by my judgmental nature, because it forces me into situations where I expect more from others then they are capable of providing. I found myself in that predicament when I attended Mount Pleasant High School’s production of “Annie Get Your Gun.” I anticipated a Broadway-level production of one of my favorite musicals. But when I left the theater, I was disappointed. Not because the cast did a poor job – on the contrary, the actors performed like any other typical high-school cast – but disappointed in myself, because I expected too much from my peers. High school productions should not be expected to be on par with the brilliance of a New York stage.
While the overall acting, vocals, and choreography of this production were typical, certain attributes of the show stood out as exceptional. The cast lacked an accompanist and performed numbers to a recorded track but overcame this challenging feat with ease and ability.
While it was obvious the show received meager funding, the sets were creative and used the company’s resources well. Leading performers Madeline Stacy (Annie Oakley) and Jacob Hammill (Frank Butler) played their roles well, with natural chemistry and strong vocals.
The best part of the show was Sam Pack, who played the role of Frank Butler’s assistant, Dolly Tate. Not only did she time her difficult lines perfectly, sing with strength and dance with ease, but this splendid actress enraptured the audience with her dancing eyes and comical grin. Pack was born to be on stage, and I cannot wait until I see her name in bright lights and can say, “I called it!”