‘Young Olympians and the Most Amazingly Awesome Adventure Ever!’ at Maryland Ensemble Theatre by Mike Spain


The fun starts at the Maryland Ensemble Theatre’s Fun Company’s production of The Young Olympians and the Most Amazingly Awesome Adventure Ever!  before we ever take our seats. The usher directs us over to have free face painting which is one of my daughter’s favorite things. The fun continues once we take our seats and the World Premiere starts in earnest.

The set is the same one the Maryland Ensemble Theatre uses for Antigone. This is fine since the settings are similar and the Fun Company gets to utilize several television screens as well. However, the two productions are quite different. This one is a musical and has a much happier ending.

The interaction between Hercules (Francis Mwale) and Jason (Joe Jalette) is vital to the production and thankfully it comes out strong, natural, and genuine. You can see it when they are teasing Perseus (Thom Huenger) or when they are clowning around in class. Perseus is portrayed as a book learned nerd. Caitlyn Joy turns in a wonderful performance as Andromeda. All four would have to work together and become heroes earlier than expected.

Rich Cole portrayal of Zeus entertained the crowd. The song he did with Poseidon (Reiner Prochaska) had the crowd laughing. Reiner also doubles up as Hades. Lisa Burl finds her match with Polypemus (Ken Poisson) when she plays Medusa. She is a scene stealer on skates when she portrays Hermes. She also leads the technology explosion in the Bronze Age adding GPS, passwords, a stone laptop and more. Karli Cole adds important roles as Chiron and an adorable Cerebus. Renee Gerrard is lots of fun and talented as a statue and puppeteer.

Left to Right: Joe Jalette, Francis Mwale, Thom Heuenge, and Caitlyn Joy. Photo by Ken Poisson.

Julie Herber does a wonderful job directing her skilled cast. Here  costume designs included a cute three-headed puppy outfit for Cerebus, decorated skates and helmets for Hermes, colorful robes for the heroes and Gods, and a bathing suit for Poseidon.

Thom Huenger composed a creative score, and along with Sarah Shulman added very uplifting and positive lyrics. Sarah’s story is a great one to share with your kids. My daughter loved it.

The theatre is selling  CDs of the score which are available for a very reasonable price of $5.00.

The Fun Company proves once again that they know how to create family fun.

Spend an hour with your favorite child and you might find the most amazingly awesome adventure ever. I know I did.

Running Time: One hour with no intermission.

The Young Olympians and the Most Amazingly Awesome Adventure Ever! plays on Saturdays and Sundays through April 22, 2012 at The Fun Company at The Maryland Ensemble Theatre – 31 W. Patrick Street, in Frederick, MD. For tickets, call the box office (301) 694-4744, or order them online.

LINK

Watch a video of  ‘Time to Be Brave” sung by Jason (Joe Jalette) who gets brave in The Fun Company’s musical The Young Olympians and the Most Amazingly Awesome Adventure Ever!

When Zeus and his Olympians are mysteriously stripped of their memories, it is up to Zeus’s sons, Hercules and Perseus, to save Mt. Olympus. Hercules, Perseus and their friends, Andromeda and Jason, set off on a quest to set things right. Along the way they learn what it really means to be a hero in this fun musical adventure.

 

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