Wave your flag, don your red, white and blue, and parade patriotically over to Waterbury’s Seven Angels Theatre for a sparkler of a musical. Light the firecrackers for an explosion of color as that bully brave Rough Rider Theodore Roosevelt charges up San Juan Hill right into the White House.
Until Sunday, June 10, settle back for a rousing good time as the marching music of John Philip Sousa welcomes “Teddy and Alice,” a musical with book by Jerome Alden, lyrics by Hal Hackady and adaptations and original tunes by Richard Kapp.
John T. Lynes is spectacular as the President who boasted he could control the country or his daughter Alice but not both. Sydney Turner is a delight as the outspoken and progressively high- spirited woman who is not afraid to voice her opinions. Her hi-jinks dismay Teddy’s cabinet (Jonathan Russ, Charles Stoop, John Swanson), inspiring the gentlemen to sing “She’s Got to Go” and “No More Alice in the White House” as they plot her marriage to Congressman Longworth (Matt Martin) as a way to get her “removed from office.”
With energy and boundless enthusiasm, Teddy presides over crises like the building of the Panama Canal, trust busting issues with J. P. Morgan (Tim Cleary), race relations with Booker T. Washington (Jerrial Young), chaos on Wall Street and the conservation movement by establishing National Parks. He initiated the concept of the Square Deal, promising to protect the average citizen with fairness.
Proving that the show must go on, artistic director Semina De Laurentis took off her capable director’s hat and stepped into the shoes of Teddy’s second wife Edith when the actress playing her, Krista Adams Santilli, suffered an accident. The entire large cast do a wonderful job creating this era in history, with spirited songs like “Make This a House,” “Charge!,” “Perfect for Each Other” and “You’ve Got Nothing to Lose But Me” as well as charming choreography by Janine Molinari in such numbers as “Leg-O-Mutton.” Jimmy Johansmeyer’s colorful costumes are perfect.
For tickets ($29-39, children under 18 $12), call Seven Angels Theatre, Plank Road, Hamilton Park Pavilion, Waterbury at 203-757-4676 or online at www.sevenangelstheatre.org. Military men and veterans are half price Memorial Day weekend, May 25 and 27. To continue the theme of patriotism, plan to attend the Red, White and Blue Comedy Night on Saturday, May 26 at 8 p.m. when three funny New York City comedians will entertain, including Tina Giorgi and Joe Devito. Tickets are $29, or $24 for season subscribers.
Gallop along and cheer on Teddy Roosevelt as he leads the country to victory, even if he can’t lead his own feisty and feminist daughter Alice into submission.