Steamboat Springs Seventh Street Playhouse's first-ever Summer Theater Festival debuted with a touching musical and a strong performance by Steamboat Community Players in "The Fantasticks."
Local director Matt Murphy's cast was terrific in its debut, showing talent that soared as high as their voices.
Although the musical was intended for adult audiences, the few youngsters in the crowd seemed to be attentive to the tragic and profound love story.
There is a manipulated rape scene and song to go along, though the scene is treated in a humorous light and is not graphic. In the scene, the fathers of the main characters Luisa and Matt stage the attempted rape so that Matt can come to Luisa's rescue and be her hero.
Outside of that scene, the play is certainly appropriate for children, if they can sit through a two-hour performance.
The nearly full playhouse Friday night applauded vigorously after each music sequence, as the actors proceeded with their parts.
There were minor problems with the lighting in the first act; however, light-board operator Patty Rockwood ironed them out and the rest of the evening went smoothly.
The interpersonal and contemplative aspects of the play touch the hearts of both young and old, providing visions of future love or conjuring memories of past experiences.
Both tragic and touching, Murphy chose a fantastic play for the intimate playhouse. Props are limited and so are the funds, but the actors didn't need them.
They were perfect, right down to Lila Henry, who played a mute with a straight face and never a peep.
The songs were a highlight. Music Director Susan Ritter made sure everyone hit the right notes.
It's refreshing to see the talent community theater can deliver.
This love story makes you feel Matt and Luisa's dilemmas and frustrations. But it also makes you feel love that is sweet and innocent can still be found.
Some obstacle must remain standing in love, otherwise you can't see what it is that makes you truly happy.
The wall must remain standing