You don’t have to be a rocket scientist to know when you are in a theater really digging a show and so is everyone else in the place. The applause is more loudly enthusiastic than polite, the energy in the room is electric. What I just described was the feeling I had at the Bay Street Theater while watching the official opening night of the musical revival of Evita.
The show is a wonderful, magical, musical experience. Perhaps the best musical production on the East End ever! Why? First of all Andrew Lloyd Webber’s score for this show made him a household name back in 1978. However you need a superb cohesive cast to sing the songs so that you feel the impact of the great Tim Rice’s lyrics. This cast of actors not only does homage to the original Broadway show, which I actually saw, but in some ways surpasses it.
One must congratulate Bay Street’s Artistic Director Scott Schwartz for selecting, Director Will Pomerantz, Choreographer Marcos Santana, Music Supervisor Aaron Jordoin, Costume Designer Lindsey W. Davis, and Scenic Designer Anna Louizos. They used all their talents in a unison effort that successfully propelled the actors to ignite the audience to cheer and applaud during the show and stand and applaud at its conclusion.
In every show there is always an actor or two who really stands out. In the Bay Street production of Evita, one could not ignore the vast array of talents of Trent Saunders in his role of Che. Mr. Saunders’ magnetic, energetic and athletic performance commanded and enticed you while he threaded the show’s phenomenal energy with his singing, facial expressions and pure physical acting prowess. However, he was not alone in the triumph that this production truly is.
Arianna Rosario’s (who played Eva) stature as a major talent seemed to grow throughout the show as the part demanded, and she was able to rise up and take the show to its highest energy points. Her singing is superb. Ms. Rosario’s chemistry with Peron, played by Omar Lopez-Cepero is special, perhaps because off-stage they are engaged to be married. Mr. Lopez-Cepero is also tremendous; he has a bright future on the stage.
Kyle Barisich (Magaldi) had very bright moments as well as and Gabi Campo’s (Mistress) strong solo received very strong applause.
Kudos and accolades to the rest of the ensemble members, Julian Alvarez, Edgar Cavazos, Lauren Csete, Elisa Galindez, Danelle Rivera, Juan Guillen, Jose Ozuna, Dakota Quackenbush, and Carolina Santos Read, for great work and performances.
Treat yourself to something special, go see the revival of Evita at the Bay Street Theater. This production is a must see! It runs through Sunday, September 2
Bay Street Theater is located at 1 Bay Street in Sag Harbor. For tickets and show information check out www.baystreet.org or call 631-725-9500.