BY BTL STAFF
ROYAL OAK- Madcap antics, high-energy dance and a toe-tapping musical score compose the perfect formula for a musical comedy to kick off Stagecrafters’ award-winning 2015-16 Main Stage series. The new Mel Brooks musical “Young Frankenstein” is the musical stage adaptation of Brooks’ 1974 black-and-white film of the same name which parodies the 1930s horror movie genre. The show began Sept. 11 and runs through Oct. 4 at the historic Baldwin Theatre in downtown Royal Oak.
Dr. Frederick Frankenstein (Jason Bowen of Madison Heights) inherits his family’s estate in Transylvania which was left to him by his infamous mad scientist grandfather. Upon his arrival, Frederick meets hunchback Igor (Jeff Weiner of Royal Oak), curvy research assistant Inga (Erika Fell of Royal Oak) and the mysterious housekeeper Frau Blucher (Kathryn Stewart-Hoffmann of Ferndale). Inspired by a dream, Frederick finds himself in the mad scientist shoes of his ancestors when he succeeds in bringing a corpse back to life, thus creating The Monster (John Forlini of Mt. Clemens). When The Monster escapes, hilarity abounds! For those familiar with the movie, all of the classic lines are still in place, but accompanied with lively, off-color musical numbers and dance, amazing costumes and an incredible set.
Director Richard Wilson (of Royal Oak) deems this show as not your typical musical, but rather a comedy with musical numbers. “This show is campy humor at its finest – it’s bawdy and full of innuendos. Nothing is said outright, but mature audiences will pick up on the campy genius of Mel Brooks’ script and score. The stage version follows the classic movie fairly well. The big difference is the addition of the musical numbers!” says Wilson.
“Young Frankenstein” (book by Mel Brooks and Thomas Meehan and music and lyrics by Brooks) premiered on Broadway in November 2007 and closed in January 2009. The original cast included Roger Bart (Frankenstein), Megan Mullally (Elizabeth) and Sutton Foster (Inga). The musical won five Boadway.com Audience Awards including Favorite New Broadway Musical.
Blackfinn Ameripub of Royal Oak provided a special pre-glow for the opening performance of the Royal Oak run of the show, with beverages courtesy of Stagecrafters.
Show tickets are $22 on Thursdays and $24 on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays. Tickets may be purchased online at www.stagecrafters.org (online handling fees apply) or by phone at 248-541-6430 using Visa or MasterCard. All seats are reserved and there are no refunds or exchanges on individual tickets. If shows have not sold out, tickets can be purchased at the box office one hour prior to the performance. Student, military and senior discounts are available for specific performances. The Baldwin Theatre is located at 415 S. Lafayette in downtown Royal Oak. Young Frankenstein is rated PG-13 and some scenes may not be appropriate for young audiences. Strobe lighting and theatrical haze will be used in the special effects.
Remaining show dates and times are as follows: 8 p.m. Sept. 24, 25, 26 and Oct. 2-3, and 2 p.m. Sept. 27 and Oct. 4.
Stagecrafters, a 501 (c)(3) not-for-profit community theater, is in its 60th year of providing opportunities for members of the community to develop their talents and to volunteer their time to create an enriching, quality theatrical experience through its Main Stage, 2nd Stage and Youth Theatre productions. At the Baldwin Theatre since 1985, Stagecrafters has been named Best Community Theatre by Hour Detroit, Real Detroit Weekly and Daily Tribune. Stagecrafters offers shows that appeal to a wide variety of ages and interests and prides itself on providing professional quality shows at affordable prices, making the performing arts accessible to individuals in our “regional” community.