Mel Brooks fans and those missing Gene Wilder should be flocking to Carmel this month, where the Booth Tarkington Civic Theatre’s current production of Young Frankenstein hits all the right notes.
First off, can we just take a moment for the sets? They are incredible! They are based on the original Broadway scenic design, but there were no corners cut in recreating them here. From the gorgeous laboratory with a winding staircase to a Transylvanian village, the sets just keep coming. There’s a ship, train, cave, horses, a giant monster puppet, a forest; you name it and it was probably in there. It was easy to get sucked into the story with the elaborate scenery.
The cast is a blast. Saucy Frau Bleucher (played by Vickie Phipps), naïve Inga (Devan Mathias), and earnest Frederick Frankenstein (Steve Kruze) all seemed like they were made for these roles. My particular favorite is Damon Clevenger as the forever loyal Igor. He was hilarious as he nimbly followed his Master’s crackpot plan. And B.J. Bovin could give Peter Boyle a run for his money in the role of the Monster.
Audiences who love the original movie won’t be disappointed as they wait for their favorite lines. The story follows the film closely with a few more song and dance numbers added to the mix. There were a few moments when the live music overwhelmed the performance, drowning out all the lyrics, but other than that there were no technical issues.
It’s certainly not for kids. Brooks is known for his movies heavily-laden with innuendos and the knockers jokes all make it into the musical as well. The style of the show is similar to Spamalot or The Producers in that sense.
Don't Miss the Show:
Performances: The show runs until Nov. 5. Performances begin at 7 p.m. Thursday through Friday, 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday. The Booth Tarkington Civic Theatre is located at 3 Center Green, Carmel, IN 46032 at the Center for the Performing Arts.
Tickets: Ticket prices range from $24.50 to $45.50 and can be purchased by calling (317) 843-3800 or visiting www.civictheatre.org.
Photos courtesy of the Booth Tarkington Civic Theatre