Presented by Diva Lounge Productions
Playwright/Author: Music by W.A. Mozart, Libretto adapted by Sonja Gustafson
Played by Sonja Gustafson, Taylor Matheson, Ian Robertson, Morgan Jones and Paul Grambo
Wolf Performance Hall
June 19–27, 2009
In information connected to The Impresario I saw this description: “Comedic singspiel.”
Well, it’s definitely a singspiel.
The moments when these five professionals perform music are perfection.
Curiously, but not surprisingly, there is no director credit. That is the one element that could turn this production from pleasant to outstanding. Perhaps too many creative cooks and no clear executive chef?
When you bill a show as, “a comedic opera in one act,” you are setting yourself up if you don’t deliver a laugh…quickly. The laughs eventually arrive but more of them are needed, especially in the first half.
For example, a complete song is performed gloriously by Ian Robertson on piano at the top of the show. That’s fine if this were a recital, an evening of Mozart. It’s not. Get Paul Grambo as Mr. Bluff in there earlier — his facial expressions are perfect for comedy. Giving him business from the get go would set the comedic tone for the entire show. Robertson and Grambo certainly have the potential to make a great comedy pair; they just need better material.
Sonja Gustafson, Taylor Roberson and Morgan Jones sang wonderfully and when the sh*t hit the fan in the plot line their interplay was delightful as were Robertson and Grambo when the joined in.
Diva Lounge Productions’ version of The Impresario has great potential. Their musical talent alone made the trip down to the Wolf Performance Hall worth the visit.