Central Florida Community Arts
Book by Mel Brooks and Thomas Meehan
Music and Lyrics by Mel Brooks
Directed by Brian Jager
Musical director by Jami-Leigh Bartschi
Choreography by Katherine Almaguer Rivera, Katie Derosa, and Bryan Jager
Starring Matt Rothenberg, Jarrett Poore, Jason True and Katie Derosa
It’s a movie! It’s a musical! It’s a real money maker for Mel Brooks! Freddy Frankenstein (Rothenberg) built enough distance from his granddaddy’s monstrous hobbies to feel safe in a New York medical school. But now the family estate is in danger of repossession by some Eastern European bureaucrats, and he must confront his heritage. He leaves his elegant yet frigid fiancée Elizabeth (Derosa) and heads east where he meets a sidekick with the wandering hump, Igor (Poore). Igor has hired sexy Inga (Bayley True) as the Doctors lab assistant giving Freddy a reason to hang around. (By the way, note there are two True’s in this show, try to keep up.) Techno gibberish and sex push us forward, and soon he and Inga spawn an 8-foot-high green monster with poor diction but great dance moves (Jason True). The towns folks are skeptical, Elizabeth has a bad sense of timing, but boy, can that green guy tap!
It’s an ambitious season for CFCA filled with complex productions. This show works well enough; there are some rough edges on the acting and the singing, but the response yields big yucks and applause. The happiest guy on stage is Mr. Poore as Igor; he smiles his way through the entire show looking like he’s having way too much fun. Rothenberg feels a little stiff if still enthusiastic; his transition from rejection of granddad’s work to embracing it happens quite quickly and seems arbitrary. I liked Ms. True’s Inga, her enthusiasm and sexuality oozes out into the expensive seats. Mr. True’s best scene comes in the Hermit’s Hut where he takes more abuse than any monster ought. Frau Blucher (Kelley Mauro) played the sexy older woman here, even though thought the horses didn’t approve of her. An excellent chorus quick changed from victims to audience members to assorted corpses went well, and the net effect was a good time for everyone, and the monster gets a girl. It’s romance, borsch belt comedian style!