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'Seussical' Overflowing with Energy

Cappies Review

ÒThink invisible ink!É Or a gink with a stink!É Or a stair to the skyÉ If you open your mindÉ Oh, the thinks you will findÉ Lining up to get looseÉ Oh, the thinks you can thinkÉ When you think about Seuss!Ó The Stone Bridge High SchoolÕs Running Dogs production of ÒSeussical The MusicalÓ exploded with an energy, color and talent that ignited the auditorium with energy and laughter.

"Seussical," inspired by Dr. Theodor Seuss GeiselÕs childrenÕs books, follows little JoJo (Kristen Rencher) as she explores her ÒThinks,Ó guided by the indomitable Cat in the Hat (Mace Sorenson). JoJo becomes the son of the Mayor of Who (Aaron Pendola), a city on a speck of dust protected by the one person who knows they exist, Horton the Elephant (Garret Brennan). Gertrude McFuzz, HortonÕs neighbor, has her own problems with her Òone feather tailÓ and her unrequited love for the elephant. The fun is not without moral however: "Seussical" reminds everyone to think for yourself, be true to yourself, and to believe in the ÒWhoÕsÓ of the world.

The entire cast performed with passion and energy, which generated a fanciful, electric atmosphere. The choreography, done by Chelsea Sorenson, Jessyka Myers and Leah Edeline, helped to create wild Mace SorensonÕs ingenious performance as the Cat in the Hat. As the manipulator, Sorenson was involved in all the action of the show, easing in and out of various characters and joining in the acrobatics. His wonderful vocals, and facial and body expressions created a richly textured and detailed performance that carried the show from start to finish. The thinker of the musical, JoJo, was adorably portrayed by the wide-eyed Kristen Rencher, an actress who gracefully exuded boyish charm. The sweet-voiced Garret Brennan brought the gentle Horton the Elephant to life with endearing vocals and characterization. Comedic actress Liney Pugh won over the audience with Gertrude McFuzz's quirks and timing. The ensembles also worked well together; the Wickersham (Monkey) Brothers stood out with their strong vocals and entertaining antics.

The Running Dog Running Crew kept the show running seamlessly moving the sets in the midst of the performances. The sets themselves were amazingly vibrant and practical, which allowed for the crewÕs easy transitions. One spectacular piece was a giant book, which, when opened, popped up into the town of Who. Alex Neumann and Hannah Cariker created fantastic lighting that vividly illuminated the stage in rich colors and hues. Especially mind-boggling was their use of black light, which illuminated dancing white and black sheets and the Cat in the Hat's outfit in the Havin'A Hunch scene.

"Seussical," a musical for children and adults alike, found a true home on the Stone Bridge Stage. The technical and performance work united to create a truly praiseworthy show of substance and flair.