“The Mountaintop” is a riveting fantasy/drama now being performed at The Mad Cow Theatre.
ORLANDO — “The Mountaintop” begins in a deceptively quiet way. It’s set in Room 306 of the Lorraine Motel in Memphis, on a night when pouring rains simply will not stop.
Reverend Martin Luther King Jr. rushes into his motel room to get out of the rain, and he seems tired, even a bit weary. There are a host of small frustrations for him to deal with: his wife forgot to pack his toothbrush, he has run out of cigarettes, and he may be getting a cold. For several minutes at the opening of the play, King is alone in the room, where he tries reading and testing out his famous speech, “I’ve Been To The Mountaintop.” He is interrupted only when a maid knocks on the door, bringing him a fresh pot of coffee. Continue reading
“Once” is a very different kind of movie-to-stage Broadway show.
ORLANDO — Broadway
musicals have a tendency, not to mention a great eagerness, to demonstrate that they can be big, splashy, and filled with extravagant special effects – perhaps no more so than when adapting a movie to the stage. Minus all the cinematic tricks at a film director’s disposal, the stage musical needs to rely a bit more on the audience’s imagination, although there’s no question stage directors like as many visual and sound effects as possible, and as many elaborate sets as can be hoisted onstage.
At the Bob Carr Performing Arts Centre
in downtown Orlando
, this trend has given us the likes of “Mary Poppins” with statues that come to life in a park, “Priscilla Queen Of The Dessert” with a bus driven across the Australian desert, and even “Wicked” with its variation on “The Wizard of Oz.” If fantasy is all about the imagination, stage productions seem quite determined to transport us to genuinely magical places once the lights go down. Continue reading