|Cast (in alphatetical order)|
|Andrew Carnes||Fred Broadbent|
|Ali Hakim||Nick Englesson|
|Aunt Eller||Cindy Ernst|
|Ike Skidmore||Wally Field|
|Will Parker||Joe Fortunato|
|Laurey Williams||Melissa Frey|
|Marshal Cord Elam||Bruce Gilbert|
|Curly McLain||Colin Hooker-Haring|
|Gertie Cummings||Erin McMaster|
|Ado Annie||Marnie Santaniello|
|Jud Fry||Jim Tully|
|"Out of my Dreams" girl||Stephanie Hughes|
|"Out of my Dreams" girl||Angelita Wood|
|Musical Director||Joe Fink|
|Ballet Choreographer||Lindsey Howard|
|State Manager||Erica Rachel Hunt|
|Lighting Designer||Jacob Nelson|
|Costume Designer||Danielle Yavorski|
|Property Master||Cheryl Christensen|
Charming 'Oklahoma's' a beautiful evening on stage
By Myra Yellin Outwater
April 1, 2008
''Oklahoma!,'' now at the Pennsylvania Playhouse, has been staged with wit, humanity and insight. Director Bill Mutimer has created a simplified, but charming vision of youthful innocence and romantic illusions.
Mutimer has struck gold with a cast whose voices soar in Rodgers and Hammerstein classics -- ''The Surrey with the Fringe on Top,'' ''People Will Say We're in Love,'' ''I Cain't Say No'' and the grand finale, ''Oklahoma!''
From the moment you hear the offstage voice of Colin Hooker-Haring as Curly, singing ''Oh What a Beautiful Morning,'' you know that it will be a beautiful evening on stage.
Hooker-Haring is a natural to play the young cowboy, so smitten with love that he is willing to sacrifice everything -- his saddle, his horse and even his gun -- to buy his true love a picnic basket. Hooker-Haring brings a boyish charm, a heroic bravado and a clear and thrilling voice to the role.
Melissa Frey, who plays Laurey, his outspoken love, with a pert and sassy indecisiveness, has a voice to match as the two duel musically in ''People Will Say We're in Love.''
Frey is so eager to show her independence that she agrees to go to the picnic with Jud Frey, a man she detests and fears rather than let Curly know she loves him.
Jim Tully brings a sulky humanity to the role of the melancholy Frey, making him less a threatening villain than an misunderstood misfit. And his duet with Curly, ''Pore Jud is Daid,'' is one of the show's musical highlights.
Cindy Ernst is a marvelous no nonsense, heart of gold Aunt Eller, equally at home singing as she is spreading happiness among her feuding neighbors, the farmers and ranchers of early 20th-century Oklahoma.
Marnie Santaniello is an enthusiastic and flirtatious Ado Annie. Santaniello steals the show every time she sashays on stage, shaking her ribbons as she flirts with suitors Will Parker and the peddler Ali Hakim.
Joe Fortunato is well-cast as the gangly, clumsy and naïve Parker. Nick Englesson is wily and coy as the slippery peddler Hakim. Fred Broadbent is a gruff, cagey and take charge Andrew Carnes eager to get rid of his lovestruck daughter, Ado Annie.
Jacob Nelson's lighting of the ballet scene dream dance adds an erotic tension to Lindsey Howard's interpretation of the famous DeMille choreography. It is enhanced by Heather Fox's graceful dancing as the dream Laurey.
Mutimer has a gift for staging large ensembles and
it's evident in this show.