Into the Woods Gala – GIANT Realizations Brought Front Stage and Center


Anyone attending the preview show yesterday for Into the Woods, AND the Gala on April 9th would know there was something a mist (sorry, bad joke, AMIDST really) .   Yet, as the mist did reel in, you could almost feel the confidence that yes, this was a creation that would show the cast of Into the Woods was confident, was creative, and told not only a story of what can occur in your life when you wish for something, but when you make that wish a reality, as every cast member did BOTH Wednesday and Thursday.  As I tend to do with roll call, let’s try that again and you will see the power of creativity flowing from every cast member –

Alejandra D – EVERY SINGLE TIME you thought you had her figured out as a shy Little Red Riding Hood, she turned a corner and even without brandishing a knife, you couldn’t help but love the spunk and feistiness she brought to what it meant to be defending your “hood” as she easily owned this character – and yes, she packs a plenty loud scream  🙂

Alexa – I have said it before and will not be afraid to say it again, when you have a voice that flows then dives right through you, touches your heart and leaves you for more – what more could you want?  Alexa’s powerful, mesmerizing, and absolutely stunning voice does not disappoint in bringing out what you want, being able to feel this musical – and feel it you do when you let yourself grab onto every note Alexa is willing to share and enchant the audience with – a showstopper absolutely and leaving you hungry for just one more song, please.

Alexander D – He certainly transforms right in front of you and lets you journey with him on that transformation, from visiting his past, present, and future, the second half combines what you thought you knew about the baker and “mixes” it up and created a brand new character.  Alex’s ability to steer this character to increasingly become stronger is only one of many talents you will see in Into the Woods, this is what great memories are made of.

Ana P – As a young actress Ana Paula brings on the determination, the forwardness, and the perfect mixture of haughtiness to make sure this character, when reappearing, will not stop putting a smile on her face.  Wishing I could FORGET her ability to consume part of her foot (you have to see it) she is perfect as Florinda and brings this character to light in just the way you would want to see her.

Arturo  – In an old series called Happy Days, the black leather jacket made The Fonz.  Arturo’s glasses and his perfect and sometimes predicted Dukes of Hazzard jump through the structures to announce his handsomeness?  – He owns this character and as a result many bouts of laughter will ensue as he easily takes this character and shows what it means to go through bouts of agony and figure out how to deal with Rapunzel  (he does try).

Caroline – Her golden hair fits her to a “T” – and I had to laugh when she stood up to her mother when she was challenged about why she was so upset – I felt Caroline has more ability to come out bolder as this character and believe in the next shows you are going to see Rapunzel continue to take on increasingly more character and definition as Caroline, who is quite capable as what I thought was a quiet young lady, (who knew?!) gets more comfortable with how well she can represent Rapunzel to a pretty funny degree.

Ingrid – You sometimes want to reach out and shake the stepmother’s hair and attitude right out of her – Ingrid is GREAT – she started out softly then you can literally see her own this character by the end of the play and pretty much state, even through tragedy, “Yeah, I’m royalty and you are?…..”  – She was able to haul her daughters back and forth all over the place while still showing – where she walked – was where everyone needed to recognize, 🙂

Isabel  – Remember that comment about a voice that is able to flow right though you?  I am almost positive I saw either Isabel or her twin singing in several venues  in a place somewhere, that is the sense you receive when you hear the maturity, strength, and power Isabel, brings to her character and the stage – also leaving you for much much more for your ears.

Jorge – I promise, if this was a modern day Dukes of Hazzard, you have the brothers right here with Jorge and Arturo – feeding off each other, pushing each other in confidence that buds to just an absolute all out “I am Prince and I RULE!” – his moves, smiles, and demeanor are nothing less that absolute – a perfect complement to all you’d expect in a prince.

Lara  – A narrator is one thing, but having the confidence to be a storyteller and still be absolutely into the story around her when she is not in the spotlight, she is ON.  Watch Lara when she is not in the spotlight and you will ABSOLUTELY SEE IT TOO – I love she is one of the main ingredients for a successful tale.

Lucia E – She is able to go through many a complicated scene gracefully and turning those scenes into making us as an audience ask, “How the heck will this work?” and she makes every scene work – she is perfect in moving the actions of a very strange experience with a quilt hysterical and absolutely life-like.

Lucia S – I would absolutely be lying if I said I did not anticipate every scene I could grab onto hearing Lucia in – I immediately think of Lucia, Alexa, and Isabel C. never ever leaving the stage and always being able to turn to a new selection for us say, for three more hours? – You can easily pass three hours after hearing Lucia combine emotions, anger, and a voice that works out so many situations, and during all of this, you anticipate every next note – you will see…

Natalia– Holy mother….exactly, MOTHER.  She plays this role of mother and you feel it as if your mother is right there beside you nagging you and – loving you.  She does not hold back on making sure everyone knows she is the mother to remind, sometimes harass, and not to forget about the emotion of caring for each other.  How does she get the curls that tight by the way?

Nicolas  – Absolutely only getting better at bringing the house down since the very first show, and bringing it down from tall heights to shady corners of the woods, Nicolas is absolutely essential to that laugh that STILL is riding in your stomach from the woods to the skies  – and fits into the nontraditional roles of Into the Woods and makes then seem ABSOLUTELY the way they should be!

Pablo G- So far there has always been, in every single musical, that one young and maybe formerly unfamiliar talent that completely takes hold you you, shakes you, and leaves you asking, “Who the heck is HE and how can we see and hear more?”  This is the one, and believe me, nothing more will be needed to be said, from his expressions, stares, and sense of being comfortable – he owned this position before he even stepped on the stage.

Pablo Gu – Seeing Pablo become even more stern and important to get his sage advice across to his son since the very first production, Pablo believes in the very pat h he is on in this story, and he will easily lead you to believe there is a way to make amends.  I am not sure I could see anyone else being able to do so like Pablo does with this role.

Pedro  – Again, part of the amazing thing of seeing multiple shows is seeing the confidence that builds in characters from the beginning.  I thought Pedro was a little meek as the steward in the initial preview and BAM! – here came Pedro with the confidence of a prince in waiting in the Gala – it is exciting to see the growth in confidence of an actor like Pedro as the shows go on and you will see this for sure – showing his talent on the stage.

Sofia –  There is this element that some actresses can being on and off the stage and Sofia DOES.  Watch her when the spotlight is not on her all the time and you will see she is truly living the part as Lucinda, on and off the “camera” so to speak, and she does it was a perfect match to the personality of her character. Add in her sister and mother, and you have a role that is filled out completely thanks to her personality on stage.

Tamara – No matter, played as Lucinda or the new love of the prince, Tamara demonstrates why she is on stage.  She embodies the commitment to a stage presence and will move any character in the direction it needs to go, capable and beyond so – and an absolute pleasure to see in show after show  🙂

Ximena  – Again, whether playing the prince’s new love interest or Florinda, you sense Ximena’s energy, enthusiasm and smile and auditorium easily.  She shines in any role she is given because she HAS THAT PERSONALITY – and pretty much everyone realizes they are glad she is on that stage.

Oh there is PLENTY so say about the role of the Director Alvaro Cervino, an amazing Tech Club and Makeup Staff, an AMAZING and patient costume staff, and the leadership of Teruhi Yoshioka, Rosana Cesarman, and Hugo Cabrera that put in an amazing unrecorded number of hours, all combined that make this family and theatre a place you just WANT TO BE on the off hours and of course during the shows.  Without knowing every one of them, you fall in love with the families of each and every one of these contributors, as you realize the beauty that must lie in the families after seeing the beauty in their very own sons and daughters. You realize, Into the Woods is a must.  That says everything, doesn’t it?  Good thing this is only the second post on what is will be another stage burning and heartwarming experience thanks to the above mentioned.

About Harry Brake

Employee of Woodbridge High School, Library Media Specialist, Media crazy! :)
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