Over the River and Through the Woods is, without a doubt, one of the best productions I have ever seen. While the play's premise is wonderfully simple, the concepts it brings into consideration are surprisingly affecting. And yet, to the great delight of any viewer, these serious issues are surrounded by a constant layer of laugh-out-loud humor.
Kevin Brady, Gretchen Douma, Charity Parenzini, Bill Johns and Kim Morris in Joe DiPietro's Over the River and Through the Woods. Photo by Erik Stuhaug.
Though the writing of the play is superb, it is of course the actors which make the real impact. Kevin Brady does exceptionally well at playing the conflicted-yet-modern grandson, while Charity Parenzini is an exemplary good-hearted blind date. However, it really is the four grandparents who steal the show. As Nunzio says at the family's first dinner, "We're old! We're adorable!" It couldn't be more true, with every best line, every best expression, and every best moment coming right out of their performances. And although these aging Italians had me in stitches throughout the entire show, it was also them who eventually moved me to tears.
This allover stunning performance is what I have come to expect from Taproot Theatre. Just as I think it can't get any better, each new show amazes me even more. Over the River and Through the Woods is a must-see production, and I cannot recommend it highly enough.
May 16th, 2008
Over the River and Through the Woods
Through June 14th
More info and show times: www.taproottheatre.org
Taproot’s Ticket Office: 206-781-9707
Ticket office hours: Tuesday – Saturday, Noon – show time
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