Murder Ballad Murder Mystery Opens with a BANG! BANG! BANG!
A lowdown & dirty load-in followed by a fast & furious tech week were well worth the dark circles meticulously covered with concealer by the cast. Thank god for adrenaline, ‘else asses would have been draggin’. A sold-out opening crowd witnessed one hell of show! Fourth of July fireworks shot straight from the swamp last Friday night. We wore our inner animals on our sleeves, tackling every scene & song with guts & gumption. Were they mishaps? Sure. Deviations from our best-laid plans? Hell, yes. And shit-ton of heart, too. And some tired, happy tears at the opening night soiree as Bonnie Cullum, toasted the incredible efforts from both Tutto Theatre Company & Vortex that brought this beast of a musical into being.
And there were no “second night blues” on Saturday when we met, once again, a solidly packed house. We were up to tricks old & new, hollerin’, line dancin’, and brandishing plastic pistols. Enough entrances and exits to make your head spin. No time hem and haw! This breakneck play requires an A game. The ensemble on their toes at all times. All except our sweet harp, Agnes, suspended in her swing like upside down anchor, defying gravity. From Lincoln Lady’s gritty ditty “I Killed You”, to the Sleuth’s bad-ass rendering of, “Why’s Everybody Gotta Die?” Murder Ballads ran, yet again, on greased lightening.
And we didn’t stop there ‘cause we packed ‘em in again on Sunday! And we even amped it up a notch for fiddle player and musical director, Andy Tindall’s birthday.We met with surprisingly responsive crowd. Jay and I managed through our rapid fire text with fewer slip-ups than ever before. Some took issue with the Indian Summer heat, but I must say it made the water fight feel like a pool party. So, I couldn’t complain. They say a cold front’s comin’ next week.
In a nutshell? Great stuff all around. The design rocks. The cast rules. The direction from Tutto Theatre Company’s Dustin Wills reeks of genius. Who could ask for more? Not me. I’m as happy as a pig in you-know-what.
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