‘Carrie’ brings cult classic to live theatre

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Courtesy of Faust Theatre

It’s mid-October and Halloween approaches after a hiatus last year. While Halloween beckons kids trick or treating the neighborhood, adults celebrate as well, but they want more than a bag of candy. That being the case, how about a musical tragedy with a bucket of blood hanging an awaiting victim?

“Carrie” beings a musical interpretation to the cult-favorite, misfit teenager who unleashed her rage and her perpetrators. The movie brought Sissy Spacek to national attention and provided Piper Laurie with the most famous role of her career. John Travolta gained prominence as well. Now, a cult classic

Well, for Kansas City’s rendition of the musical drama, watch Josephine Pellow and Margo Losey Mikkelson take on the daughter and mother roles of the cult classic. The clash begins quickly as a fervent wacked-out Bible thumper forces her beliefs on her shy, outcast daughter.

The show brings forth the cruelty of high schoolers and the caste system the exists in both middle and high school. There are those that have popularity and prominence made possible by the lower group of the poor, the shy, the outcasts. Carrie represents the shy outcast who knows little about life and becomes shocked into reality and fear when she experiences her first period at age 17, while in gym class.

Her fear and shock at menstruation allows the popular females in the class an opportunity to shun her further, laugh at her, and taunt her. Upon her return home, her mother used The Bible to further curse Carrie.

Carrie White discovers her telekinesic powers in the locker room. From there, she begins to train and learn more about her special gift. Those powers and her fury foretell the final rage at the high school prom.

Strong acting and singing performances come from both Pellow and Mikkelson. Their performances are supported by good casting by the director and the musical director. The strongest support comes from Maggie Bunch, Chris Hargensen and Erin Pettijohn-Huffman.

As for the boys, the script does not allow any to create much from any character. That is one of the weak parts of the script. The only male character with more than three lines is Maddox Bane as Carrie’s prom date. The script does not give him lines or scenes to develop a character.

The show builds to the famous prom scene and hell on earth. The audience will see how that famous scene plays with a live performance. It’s all there–the crazy mother, the shy daughter, the power Carrie discovers, the cruelty among peers, and the finality of revenge.

Faust Theatre’s production doles out the Halloween horror with “Carrie.” Don’t bother to check out the Broadway success–the show had 16 previews and closed after five performances. Still, the show has found legs in regional and local theatres. “Carrie” just did not make the transformation from screen to Broadway stage. But, for those wanting some Halloween fun, go see this version.

The voices are fantastic. The actors do a great job with what the script allows. And, yes, the bucket of blood awaits you.

Courtesy of Faust Theatre

Give the cast and crew the applause they deserve in taking this Broadway flop to smaller theatres. “Carrie” continues at the Arts Asylum in Kansas City, Missouri. It is presented by Faust Theatre that produces shows performed by younger actors. Their shows are small and the focus promotes young talent and gives them the chance to develop their acting skills.

Zach Faust directed a strong cast comprised mostly of young, up and coming local actors. The cast is: Carrie White – Josephine Pellow, Margaret White – Margo Mikkelson, Sue Snell – Maggie Bunch, Chris Hargensen – Mia Valentine, Miss Gardner – Erin Pettijohn-Huffman, Tommy Ross – Maddox Bane, Billy Nolan – Charlie Meacham, Norma Watson – Zoe Lepper, Mr. Stephens – Johnathan Long, Frieda – Shantice White, Helen – Abigail Knepper, Freddy – Randall Jackson, Stokes – Danny Campos, George – Christian Renteria, Cheryl – Kameryn Behrend, Laurie – Allison Buell, Alice – Emma Mathieson, Rachel – Emma Jacobson.

To create the magic, the production team is: Director/Scenic Designer – Zach Faust, Music Director – Delano Mendoza, Choreographers – Emmy Hadley & Jackson Tomlin, Stage Manager – Hannah White, Lighting Designer – Ian VanDusen, Costume Design & construction – Elinor Vaughn & Amatista Rodriguez-Rose, Props Designer – Ethan Schreiber, Intimacy Coordinator – L.D., Assistant Music Director – Christian Owen, Assistant Lighting Designer – Danielle Dodd, Tech Crew – Petra Uhlig, Miranda Brand, Sequoia Crissman.

The band for “Carrie” is: Todd Gregory-Gibbs (Rehearsal Accompanist/Keys 1), Barbara Jurgensmeier & Laurie Schwab (Keys 2), Bill Wood & Bill Welch (Guitar 1), Mario Lozoya & Nick Yoder (Guitar 2), Zach Keyser (Drums), Madi Tozier (Cello).

If you haven’t gotten your tickets yet, grab them at CarrieByFaust.Eventbrite.com while you still can. According to Faust, “Tickets are selling fast and there are only a li numbited number of seats remain available.”

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