The Fantasticks: A Review

More stories from Mattea McDonald


Photo Courtesy of Broadway

The Fantasticks opened in the Marren Theatre in the W. Carroll Coyne Center for the Performing Arts on Oct. 1 to a sold out audience. People packed into the Marren to watch an extremely talented group of actors and singers perform a show that has dazzled audiences for decades.

This show is one of Off-Broadway’s longest running musicals, as it ran from 1960 until March of this year, and boasted over 55,000 performances. It’s obvious to see why Major Arcana, Le Moyne’s student-led theatre group, would want to bring the show to the Le Moyne community.

Directed by senior Lucas Greer, the show tells the story of two young, forbidden lovers [Romeo and Juliet, anyone?] whose parents seem to be at all odds with each other. In a different and exciting plot twist, however, it turns out the parents are the ones who have set the kids up and hope to have them married. In order to get their way, the parents build a wall to keep the two lovers separated, hoping that the tension of the wall would cause the children to fall in love with each other. The wall did create a romance, but what happens when the wall falls down?

Eventually, the wall is brought down, but once it’s down, life is not the same for our lovers. They seem to be at odds with one another. While our lovers are having their own quarrel, the mothers are at each others throats, as well. Everyone is blaming everyone else for the tension the now-missing wall has created, and of course, like any interesting play, in comes a villain to shake things up a bit.

The actors in this show portrayed this story of love, loss, and reconciliation with exemplary execution and skill. Though the set and dressing of the stage were simple, it made the show feel much more personal and allowed the audience to feel as if they were actively engaged in the show at all times. The string lights and Fantasticks’ backdrop made the set feel cozy.

Senior Killian Crowley opened the show as El Gallo, the show’s supervillain and narrator alike, who seems to fix everything in the end with just a touch of Spanish magic. Crowley brought a life to this role, and made the audience roar with laughter.

Sophomore Siobhan Shea performed the role of Henry, an old actor who is well past his prime, but still continues to believe he is the next Laurence Olivier. He, along with his sidekick Mortimer [played by senior Ryan Smith], provided some much needed comedic relief with their quick wit and hilarious accents. Shea played Henry expertly, bringing a certain quirkiness and manneristic perfection to the role.

The most remarkable voice of the night was easily junior Jenna Seifert in the role of Luisa. Seifert has a voice that is incomparable to many women her age. Whenever she hit a gorgeous high note, it sent chills up my spine and made me look upon her in awe.

Every actor in this show was spectacular and made the show come together in such a beautiful and wonderful way. The passion and drive really showed on stage and made the show enjoyable, funny, and relatable. Congratulations to you, Fantasticks.