Infinity Children’s Theatre presents the world premiere of Jack vs. Rapunzel: The Musical, with book and lyrics by Co-Founder Alan Ostroff, and music by Clayton Colwell. The production is directed and choreographed by Tommy Iafrate.
The premise of this children’s story is about the Aarne Thompson Fairy Tale Competition, in which fairytale characters compete in rounds to win the highest number in order to be considered a part of the Aarne Thompson System. This competition is between Jack, from Jack and the Beanstalk and Rapunzel is from, well Rapunzel. The four rounds are: Archery, Don’t Snap, Freeze, and The Interview Game.
Kids and adults are entertained in the lobby as a pre-show where MC Sam Smiley (Sam Hood Adrain) interviews children by asking, “Who do you think is going to win the competition?” Adrain is exuberant and animated in a goofy kind of way. He is tall and lanky yet poised in his black suit, white shirt and oversize royal blue bow tie. He sets the tone for this extremely upbeat and hilarious show that will have children and adults laughing from beginning to end.
Shelley (Alex Smith) is Sam Smiley’s adorable sidekick and he too is dressed in a white shirt with a fancy suit that is trimmed with black satin. He is reminiscent of Uncle Fester of The Addams Family because he is so goofy and yet so lovable. The nice surprise about Smith is his stunning singing voice that couples nicely with the other characters.
Jack (Jacob Shipley) is just as cute as cute can be. He plays an arrogant Jack, but if his character was not confident he would not be a match for Rapunzel. Jack is cool in his black leather pants, billowy white shirt, and brown leather vest as he sings, dances, and manages some stupendous slap-stick moves.
Rapunzel (Ana Marcu) is an exception young lady, who is strong in taking charge of her life and the competition. She is an incredible dancer in her hot pink tutu dress with a tie-dye over-lay on the skirt. Rapunzel and Jack swap quite a bit of banter but as the competition moves forward so does their friendship. They complement each other that offers they like each other, however, as a children’s show, it remains G-rated.
Though Jack’s mom (Emily Freeman) considers herself a secondary character, is on the frumpy side and hovers over her son Jack, the show would not work without her. Freeman lends her voice in support of the rest of the cast and even has a lovely duet with Smith. Her costume is dowdy with a long skirt, blouse and vest. She also wears a handkerchief over her hair and an apron as well in muted tones.
Jack vs. Rapunzel: The Musical is Infinity’s Children’s Theatre that is comprised of interns from the techies (set, costume, sound and lighting design) to the actors and most of the roles in between. Andrew Rasmussen’s set is simple and a replica of a game show stage that is flanked with Jack’s bean stalk and Rapunzel’s tower. There is a small platform center stage and a tally board as well. The entire set glistens with royal blue streamers and the Fairy Tale book is designed with red velvet and gold glitter. Technical Director/Audio Engineer Kevin Slattery’s sound and Nathan Hawkins’ lighting bring the entire show together in a cohesive manner.
The musical range consists of traditional musical theater to opera-like numbers, and then some rousing galvanizing rock. The added bonus is audience participation that will bring joy to children and adults alike.
Jack vs. Rapunzel: The Musical is a must-see this summer. Don’t miss it!
Running Time: One hour, with no intermission.
Jack vs. Rapunzel: The Musical play through August 1, 2015 at Infinity Theatre Company performing at Anne Arundel Community College’s Humanities Building Theatre (Room 112) – 101 College Parkway, in Arnold, MD. For tickets, call the box office at (877) 501-8499, or purchase them online.