Boot and Buskin delivers yet again with “Around the World in 80 Days”

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Daniel Barbour, Staff Writer

 

After a string of incredibly successful theatrical productions this year from the PAC, including Eugène Ionesco’s “Rhinoceros” and Melanie Marnich’s “These Shining Lives,” yet another fantastic show has been brought to the Le Moyne community in the form of Boot and Buskin’s production of “Around the World in 80 Days,” directed by Matt Chiorini.

Based on the novel of the same name, written by Jules Verne in 1873, the play follows the story of Phileas Fogg (played by freshman Vincent Randazzo), a wealthy Englishman who attempts to circumnavigate the world in a mere 80 days on a bet, with his newly hired valet Passepartout (junior Tyler Sperrazza). Needless to say, shenanigans ensue. The pair travels to various countries including India, China and America on the journey to and from London, running into a myriad of colorful and amusing characters along the way.

Perhaps the most impressive element of this production is the use of relatively few actors to take on an enormous number of roles. The prime example of this is senior Andrew Derminio, who ends up playing over the course of the show, characters including (but not limited to) a sea captain, another sea captain,  a confederate American captain reminiscent of Yosemite Sam, a midget and an Indian priest. The amount of energy and enthusiasm thrown into each of these roles is truly stunning and one of the highlights of the show.

Senior Jake Ellison also takes on a number of roles in the show, but is primarily used as Detective Fix, an English detective following Phileas Fogg on the suspicion that he robbed a bank and is trying to escape. The role proves to be a highly amusing one, with Ellison producing a great number of laughs from the audience over the course of the performance.

Sperrazza proves to have quite the knack for comedic acting as well with his truly hilarious performance as Passepartout. If you don’t find yourself bursting out giggling upon the mere mention of a stove for the next few days after seeing this show, there may be something seriously wrong with you.

Randazzo as Phileas Fogg and senior Alisha Espinosa as love interest Aouda performed outstandingly as well, making the roles interesting and fun to watch, despite being less blatantly comedic than most of the others present in the play.

Also notable was the use of two foley artists to make sound effects for various occurrences during the play through clever use of numerous instruments and inanimate objects. The number of instruments used by the duo (junior Isaac Betters and sophomore Rachel McVicar) is impressive to say the least, and the two both delivered hilarious performances of their own throughout the show, being present on the stage and doing something or other for almost its entire duration with unfailing enthusiasm.

“Around The World in 80 Days” continues April 19-21 at 8 p.m. in the Performing Arts Center ($4 for students), so there’s no excuse to not go out and get yourself a ticket to what is truly one of the funniest pieces of theater this reviewer has seen in a long time.