Review: ‘Dracula’ at The Little Theatre of Alexandria

Local theatre gems exist everywhere and The Little Theatre of Alexandria is definitely one of the DC area’s theatrical treasures. An exceptional cast brought Halloween to Old Town Alexandria with its opening night of Dracula. A full house enjoyed this play, directed by Jennifer Lyman, and based on the classic novel by Bram Stoker, which was published in 1897.

Syed Murshed, Griffin Voltmann, Jeff Elmore, and Chanel Lancaster in Dracula. Photo by Doug Olmsted.

The show on Saturday night started off with its own fright when a cast member had a medical emergency and they had to restart the show 5 minutes in. As they say, the show must go on and it did in a professional fashion.

Without giving away too much, Dracula is a story about a lonely Count from Transylvania who decides to transplant to London and feast on new victims. His arrival, however, is not very welcome.

Actor Jeff Elmore, who plays Renfield, steals the scenes as Dracula’s henchman and insane asylum patient of Dr. John Seward. Talk about commitment! He laughs manically, screams, moans, and withers on the ground. He ties the whole story together as a foreshadower and brings all the characters together.

Hats off to Lynley Peoples, as Lucy Westnera (a blood interest of Count Dracula), with her blood-curdling scream. Chills! Chris Anderson plays a fantastic Dracula. His great poise commands the stage. The British accents add authenticity to the show, which showcased great work by Dialect Coach Cheryl Sinsabaugh.

Chris Andersen as Dracula. Photo by Doug Olmsted.

The versatile set design by Matt Liptak sets the mood of the Victorian era. The set easily transitions from a dungeon to a castle to a bedroom and a graveyard. I especially enjoyed the window to the bedroom and the candles throughout the set. The costume design by Jean Schlichting and Kit Sibley, featured period-appropriate suits for the men, also add to the authenticity of the show. The music and sound designed by Janice Rivera add a transcendent quality to the show.

Running Time: Two hours and 15 minutes, with one 15-minute intermission.

Dracula plays through November 3, 2018, at the Little Theatre of Alexandria – 600 Wolfe Street, in Alexandria, VA. To purchase tickets, go online.

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Marlene Hall
Marlene Hall grew up an army brat and has lived all over the world and in Washington, DC where she was constantly exposed to theater and music. Marlene graduated from the University of Virginia where she wrote for the Cavalier Daily interviewing musicians. Commissioned as an Air Force officer, she served 8 years. She now works as a realtor with eXp Realty. In addition, Marlene dabbles in improvisational comedy and has taken classes at the famed iO Theater in Chicago and the DC Improv. She is very active in the DC charity and social scene and contributes her time to veterans’ organizations Team Rubicon and Team Red, White, and Blue. She also was a supernumerary in the Washington National Opera’s Carmen with opera singer Denyce Graves. She loves the music and theater scene in DC and goes to as many concerts and shows as possible.