Thanks to Whedonopolis, I was able to get tickets to opening night. The evening was a double-bill that opened with the one-man show GAM3RS: The Play. This play, performed and co-written by Brian Bielawski, is chock full of geek references. The writing, while possibly containing a few too many in-jokes, does a very good job of showing a geek at work and play. I wasn’t sure what to expect going in, but I was pleasantly surprised and enjoyed it very much. If you enjoy gaming, geeky things, or independent theater, you should give GAM3RS a try.
The main event for me, though, was Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog LIVE. The quick summary for those few who need it: it’s the story of a low-rent super-villain, the hero who keeps beating him up, and the cute girl from the laundromat he’s too shy to talk to. Written by Joss, Jed & Zack Whedon and Maurissa Tancharoen, this Emmy winning internet hit is produced, adapted and directed for the stage by Andy Lowe. He pulled together a dedicated cast and crew in order to get this fan-driven local production off the ground and soaring.
The vast majority of the original is carried over to the production with little or no changes. Of course there had to be some action, set, and effects changes to work for the stage, but virtually everything that’s altered or added is done well and in the spirit of the original. There were 2 or 3 small additions to the script that ranged from filler during set changes up to inspired genius. There were also some innovative ways to accomplish things not possible on stage, such as the Wonderflonium robbery sequence. I won’t spoil any of their surprises; I’ll just say they are a mix of laugh out loud funny and great compromise.
The three main characters are played by Nathan Turner (Dr. Horrible/Billy), Jane Lui (Penny) and Michael Minto (Captain Hammer). Both of the men are excellent in their roles and bring familiar lines in sometimes new and interesting ways. Jane Lui made her acting debut in this production, and while she did a good job overall, you could tell that she had less polish than the other leads. She is an excellent singer, but I found her distinctive vocal style a bit distracting since it was so different from the rest of the cast’s. The supporting cast all performed well and I found nothing to complain about.
The production itself, from the live music, to the sets, to the props, were all very well done on what was obviously a low budget. The crew behind the scenes obviously loved putting this together and you could see that down to the smallest details.
Overall, for my first experience at a live performance of Dr. Horrible, I am very happy I got to see this play. If you’re a fan of the original, this is definitely worth seeing.
Photo Credit DanRegal Photography