Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Caldwell Theatre: Something's Afoot (2 reviews)

Something's Afoot marks the departure of Artistic Director Michael Hall from the Caldwell Theatre, a company he founded over three decades ago.

Michael hall directs a cast that includes Beth Dimon, Jim Ballard, Lisa Manuli, Angie Radosh, John Felix, Terry Hardcastle, Crista Moore, Michael Shawn Louis,Don Stansfield, and Tim Bennett in a rare appearance.

Kevin D. Thompson reviewed for the Palm Beach Post;
Something's Afoot, although humorous in spots, misses way more than it hits and lacks the comedic zing that's the cornerstone of all rib-tickling parodies.
(it) boasts the type of hammy, cardboard cutout characters you'd expect to see in a murder-mystery spoof, including the booze-guzzling playboy (Jim Ballard), the dependable handyman (Terry Hardcastle), the devoted butler (Don Stansfield), the wide-eyed optimist (Lisa Manuli) and a Miss Marple-ish spinster (Elizabeth Dimon). Of that group, only the comically over-the-top Ballard really registers by playing Nigel Rancour as a cross between Sean Connery and Inspector Clouseau. But minus the French accent.
Something's afoot all right. And it kinda stinks.
Ouch. I think it's safe to say that that's a 'thumbs down' from Kevin.

Hap Erstein reviewed for Palm Beach ArtsPaper:
Something’s Afoot is the sort of show that requires its performers to make the material seem better than it is, as Felix does with an amusing multi-part death scene and Moore, who adds an extra lilt to Barbara Flaten’s unexceptional choreography. Bennett makes a brief appearance as Dr. Grayburn, long enough to make the point that switching to become the company’s technical director was a savvy career move. Even the reliable Dimon seems stymied by the plodding role of Miss Tweed.

Still, the cast is far more interesting than the show they try desperately to sell us. The thought of them having to keep doing Something’s Afoot for the next five weeks is cringe-worthy. Not that he is without blame, but it is unfortunate that this is the show with which Hall makes his exit.
Something's Afoot plays at the Caldwell Theater Company through May 17, 2009.

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