Heathers, the Musical is a sensational piece of theatre, fully expressing Peppermint Creek's mission "to produce contemporary theatre that addresses vital issues in our society, raises awareness, and encourages dialogue while entertaining."
I had never seen the 80's cult movie on which was based, so I had no idea what to expect. A musical about bullying and suicide... sounds fun? There is a powerful contrast between the humorous, 80's spoof and and the deeper darker themes. It's sort of like Legally Blonde meets Sweeney Todd. In the audience I felt a theatrical whiplash that was unnerving... which may be a Peppermint Creek "mission accomplished."
John Dale Smith and his combo led complex music with customary excellence. Karyn Perry's choreography was wonderful (and I particularly enjoyed the exquisite fight/dance choreographed by Curran Jacobs.) Sound Designer Troy Boyd and Lighting Designer Nick Eaton added real impact. Director Blake Bowen led an excellent cast bravely through the dangerous ups and downs of this mountainous emotional trek.
Ellie Wiese was the heart of the show as Veronica, torn between the popular Heathers, the troubled avenger JD (the powerful Adam Woolsey) and her longtime, sincere but "uncool" friend, Martha, touchingly played by Teriah Flemming. Emma Kron-Deacon was beautifully awful as Heather #1; Kylie Densmore was her viciously apt protégé as Heather #2; and Heather #3 Taylor Rupp really came into her own in Act 2. Laura Croff was hilarious as Mrs. Flemming and sincere as Veronica's mom; Gordon Hicks was convincing as two very different dads. Zach Riley and Brian Farnham were wonderful as oafish jocks Ram and Kurt. Joe Quick and Connor Kelly's act II song was a show-stopper.
Lobby displays accept donations and have further information on combatting suicide and bullying. There is the opportunity to get your photo taken for Silence Shoot, representing those who have lost their voices through suicide. www.thesilenceshoot.com. There was also a lot of information from The American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, afsp.org
This is a very impressive show— and pretty much FULL on opening night so make reservations www.peppermintcreek.org - and plan to arrive early (general seating.) Tickets are available at the door while they last.
HEATHERS continues 8pm Thur/Fri/Sat and 2pm Sundays through February 19.