"Romeo and Juliet"

(05-04-2011)

A Review by Linda Relyea

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The opening and closing scenes of "Romeo and Juliet", an Adams State College Theatre Department production, make the play worth the effort of closing laptops and silencing cell phones. Director Dr. John Taylor's editing and staging decisions create an original performance that delightfully guides the audience through the beloved and timeless tale.

Throughout her college career, Eleanor Smith manages to approach each of her on-stage characters with unique layers of emotional and intellectual dimension. Her passionate portrayal of Juliet brings grace and dignity to the character. Kaitlyn Perham almost steals the show with her brass, confrontational character, Nurse. She adds plenty of laughter and heart to the stage. As a community, we have come to expect much of Jacob Sorling, and he delivers yet again as the turbulent, rebellious Romeo.

Unfailingly, Taylor chooses the right artist to compose the original music. Barefoot and calm, Paul Kobe could be a reincarnation of John Lennon. Somehow he manages to punctuate each scene with just the right score and tone adding emotional levels. Brooms, trash can lids, and empty paint cans may not enter the average mind when envisioning dance, but choreographer Aubrey Lucero steps up and out of boundaries, enchanting the audience.

It would be amiss not to mention Mark Jones as Tybalt; his command of a seething, arrogant, angry young man bent on the destruction of his enemies brings an intense energy to this production. I also enjoyed the performance of Ian Orbke as Friar Laurence. Despite his youth and relative inexperience as a young man, Orbke reaches the depth needed for the priest hoping to end a fruitless feud by uniting the young lovers.

Google, Bing, Netflix, IPod, Smart Phone have no real substance when compared to the pen and ink of Shakespeare and Taylor's production, "Romeo and Juliet", will hold your interest and heart more securely than any mobile device or contemporary blockbuster.

"Romeo and Juliet", written by William Shakespeare, continues at 8 p.m. Thursday, Friday, and Saturday, May 5, 6 and 7, on the Adams State College Main Stage; with a 2 p.m. matinee on Sunday, May 8. Tickets are $10 for general public, $8 for seniors and students, $6 for children 12 and under, and free to Associated Students and Faculty. Call 719-587-TIXX for reservations.

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