Guys and Dolls - performed January 1990
By Frank Loesser
Performed with the kind permission of Music Theatre International
Director - Dennis Murfitt
Cast(in order of appearance)
Production TeamJude Hussey, Jenny Rollings, Bruce Emeny, Maurice Barber, Peggy Barber, Dennis Murfitt, Greg Garrad, Alison Brett, Lisa Lucus, Jenny Glayzer, Judy Butler, Val Taylor, Chris Wheeler, Marion Harvey, Patience Ling, Viv Wheatley, and other volunteers not mentioned.
The MusicalDesperate to find money to pay for his floating crap game, Nathan Detroit bets Sky Masterson a thousand dollars that Sky will not be able to take a local Salvation Army girl, Sarah Brown, to Cuba. While Sky eventually is able to convince Sarah to join him, Nathan battles with his fiancé of fourteen years, Adelaide. Meanwhile in Cuba, Sky ends up falling in love with Sarah and tries to reform his gambling ways. When he returns back to New York, he bets all the members of the floating crap game that if he wins his roll of the dice, they will all have to go to church and repent. If he loses, he will give them each a thousand dollars. He ends up winning and all the gamblers end up visiting the mission and repenting their sins.
ReviewsEven to contemplate presenting this brash, sprawling musical on one of the most miniscule stages in the area would seem to most societies to be wishful thinking.
To carry it off successfully by dint of sheer ingenuity and inch-perfect planning is a tribute to the adventurous ambition of its enterprising director and cast, and to the high level of technical expertise available. Bruce Emeny’s lighting design is not merely efficient, but creative and imaginative in it own right. The 3-D effect of the Broadway skyline stretching out in perspective to seeming infinity is quite magical, and with equally proficient accompaniment from Patience Ling at the piano and Greg Garrad on percussion, the back-up element is in the surest of capable hands.
A trifle leisurely to begin with – which is in the nature of the actions as much as any tardiness on the part of the
company – the presentation lifts perceptibly the moment Bernie Brindley breezes in – tall, handsome and whimsically
elegant as Sky Masterson.
Singing with complete relaxation in a coppery husky voice, every number is flawlessly phrased, every not caressed,
every emotional nuance effortlessly touched in the finest local interpretation of the character is have been my
pleasure to witness.
Even the crap game takes on immediate drive and impetus on his arrival, and his playing with Julia Byford-Smith’s
willowy, clear-as-a-bell Salvation’s Sarah is funny and touching by turns.
I had heard plenty of glowing reports about Manifest Theatre group productions and their latest offering,
Guys and Dolls, certainly upheld their reputation.
Special mention must go to Julia Byford-Smith for her outstanding performance as Salvation Army girl, Sarah Brown.
Her musical numbers were spot-on and the audience was pared any slightly off-key, top notes.
And a professional, polished and extremely funny portrayal of gambler Nathan Detroit was given by Simon Colbourne.
Jill Laurie also put in a very entertaining performance as Miss Adelaide, and Bernie Brindley made an excellent job
of the part of Sky Masterson.
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