By Guest Author, Wes Cobaugh.
“A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court,” a 1941 adaptation by John G. Fuller of the 1889 Mark Twain novel now running at Aldersgate Church Community Theater Fridays through Sundays, through April 9th, is a fun-filled family-friendly evening far lighter than Twain’s political satire.
The talented cast of ten keeps the audience entertained while director Rich Amada’s comic sense imbues the script with sight gags that emphasize the many anachronisms and improbabilities of the plot.
This deceptively spare production gives way in Act II to a Medieval Madhouse where even a toothbrush can be multi-tasked. Do not look for knightly dignity in Ted Culler’s Sir Launcelot [sic], or Scott Stofko’s Sir Sagramor, while Emily Golden’s slinky seductress Morgan Le Fay and Colin Davies’ bloodthirsty Merlin are all that a classicist could desire in theater villains.
Mike Dobbyn is the befuddled efficiency expert and engineer, Hank, oblivious to the charms of Le Fay or Sandy (Kirstin Apker) while on guard against the machinations of Queen Guenever [sic] (Angelene LeBlanc) as he brings Clarence (seventeen year-old Olivia Parker) and Elaine (Brooke Angel) into his 20th Century toiletry empire – and a charmingly henpecked and befuddled King Arthur (Jim Pearson) looks on in disbelief.
The set designed by Becky Patton, constructed by TJ Downing and painted by Mary Hutzler and Stacey Becker is beautifully lit by Allan Sean Weeks. Sound Designer Lynn Lacey keeps toes tapping with incidental music composed by director, Rich Amada. Charles Dragonette’s set dressing and props bring the imaginings of what Hank thinks King Arthur’s castle might have looked and felt like to hilarious life. Special effects by Art Snow and lighting designer Allan Sean Weeks provide for some additional excitement.
If you’re looking for an escape from the Washington area madness, come join this medieval romp of “A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court,” playing at Aldersgate Church Community Theater March 24 through April 9. Directed by Rich Amada; produced by Marg Soroos and Jayn Rife, the theater is located within Aldersgate United Methodist Church, 1301 Collingwood Road, Alexandria, VA 22308. Visit www.acctonline.org to order tickets.