Letters, lights, and sound. Three big things that stood out when I watched Matilda the musical on Tuesday night, it's opening night at the Orpheum in downtown mpls. In 1996 the movie Matilda came out about a little genius whose parents didn't love her. In 2010 Matilda premiered at Stratford-upon-Avon then premiered on broadway April 11th, 2013. Matilda the musical is based off of Roald Dahl’s book, Matilda. The show is sad, yet heartwarming and leaves you loving little Matilda.
The overall acting of the ensemble as a whole was good. Matilda who was played by Jenna Weir impressed me immensely. She was so little and completely came off as a 5 year old. Her second half of the show was stronger, clearer, and I think she really took over. She was professional and outshined in my opinion the other kids.... that may be because she was the lead, but she led the show with power. Mrs and Mr Wormwood played by Darcy Stewart and Matt Harrington did a great job at portraying mean horrible parents. Ms Trunchbull played by Dan Chameroy was mean, gross, and great. He did a job well done. The kid ensemble was cute, however during some of the musical numbers I couldn't understand the words they were singing, I came across that problem a few times with Mrs. Honey as well who was played by Jennifer Bowles. Jennifer Bowles was sweet and just like honey on stage, I was immediately reminded of the Mrs. Honey in the movie. The dancers were great and the overall Choreography of the show was fun and exciting. The Choreographer of the show was Peter Darling.
In my first paragraph I had mentioned letters, lights, and sound as main things I took away from the show. All technical aspects of the show. The letters were a main part of the set, they formed an arc on the stage and were used in many different ways. The show took place in so many different settings and I always believed each place the characters were in. The set was bold and strong designed by Rob Howell who also custom designed. The lighting for me made the show. It was random, entertaining, and bright. Each mood Matilda or any other character would feel was reflected in light. Lighting design was by Hugh Vanstone. Throughout the duration of the show there were quite a few sound issues. Not surprising considering it's a traveling show and they tend to load in the same day as opening night. In live theatre anything can happen and the actors didn't seem phased by a single thing.
Matilda the musical was fun and would seem intriguing to younger audiences. The musical number “When I Grow Up” was beautiful and something I would love to see again. There are three little girls playing the role of Matilda and I was happy to be there the night Jenna Weir was on stage. Matilda is playing at the Minnesota Orpheum until Sunday April 2nd. After seeing the show I want to be 5 again!