Local artistic director, Mike Timm, attended Sunday's performance and had these reviews of the show:
Professor Harold Hill: Music Man and Happy-Go-Lucky Con Man/Salesman
Actor Michael Pryor took on a huge challenge when he stepped onto the stage as the lead character Professor Harold Hill in Allegro‘s production of The Music Man.
In the opening moments of the play, during an amusingly, well-choreographed train ride sequence, we learn that there is an infamous traveling salesman who delights in trickery. His name is Professor Harold Hill and by deceiving these local townspeople, he is giving all traveling salesman a bad name.
When the train comes to an abrupt stop, a brash and smiling salesman who is carrying a suitcase that reads “Professor Harold Hill”, gets off the train.
It doesn’t take him long to figure out a money making scheme in the sleepy little town of River City, Iowa.
The audience becomes a witness to his unscrupulous character, as he sets up his con with fast talking words and a congenial voice. As Professor Harold Hill takes an interest in and befriends some of the characters in the story, we begin to see a positive change in him.
It is Professor Harold Hill’s witty dialogue and playful banter with Marian Paroo that provides the catalyst for change in both characters. Their relationship develops into an unexpected, but satisfying, twist of fate for both of them. His rendition of “76 Trombones” not only fired up the townspeople, but inspired the audience members to sing along with equal enthusiasm. Michael Pryor created quite a likable character as a Music Man and left the audience with a lovable performance to remember.
The Delightful Librarian Marian Paroo leads Music Man in Stellar Production
Community theater is alive and well in Warrenton as demonstrated in Allegro‘s newest production, The Music Man.
Leading the way was an unlikely personality presented in the character of Marian Paroo. Randi Puckett’s “spot on” character portrayal and beautiful singing voice commanded the audience’s attention every time she appeared on stage. Certainly the dialogue and demeanor were important elements of her acting, but her visual techniques were noteworthy too. Initially, the audience observed Marian avoiding direct eye contact with Harold Hill, but as the relationship developed, she began moving closer and making direct eye contact with him. The audience was eager to see what would happen with each new encounter between them. When she and Harold finally confessed their love in “Till There Was You”, the audience’s hearts were won too.
Music Man’s Success Showcases Many Talents
Allegro’s 2019 production of The Music Man included fine portrayals by the leads and a polished performance provided by the entire ensemble. Some of the highlights include:
Mrs. Paroo - Veronica Kennedy
Veronica must have Irish blood flowing through her heart, because she played her part with all the love, joy and energy of a feisty Irish immigrant Mother pushing her aging daughter towards the altar. The several scenes that took place at the Paroo home were enlivened by her quick wit and homespun motherly advice.
Eulalie Shinn - Tiffany Downey
Egads! What a comedic performance, played like a bonafide original Suffragette. Her reactionary facial expressions and exaggerated gestures added to the headstrong personality of her character. Certainly her performance with 2 Grecian Urns, culminating in a dramatic “Fountain” display, set comedy back at least 100 years. Bravo!
Shipoopi - Full Cast Dance Number
Allegro is a school that offers training in the entire range of performing arts and the dancing talents of the cast was beautifully demonstrated during the Shipoopi Sequence. The choreography featured a variety of dance styles and included cast members of most every age level and talent. We can appreciate the amount of time and creative efforts that went into the rehearsal of this one song.
When you watch an Allegro production, you will always see the entire ensemble working together and enjoying every moment they are performing on stage for an audience.
Barbershoppers- as an extra bonus, the audience was treated to some good old-fashioned Barbershop Music. Both The School Board Members & Mint Condition Barbershop Quartet gave the audience the opportunity to hear the beautiful blended four part harmony that was so popular in our country for many decades. They sounded terrific!
Mint Condition is still active and performing in the Warrenton area. It was a real treat to see them in this performance.
Three Shows Remain, Nov. 22 and 23 at 7:00 p.m. and Nov. 24 at 4:00 p.m. Buy tickets here or at the door.