Little Shop of Horrors at Ford's Theatre

You read that right. Ford's, best known for being the place where Abraham Lincoln was killed, is currently producing off-Broadway cult hit Little Shop of Horrors. Seems weird, right? I thought so too, but it turned out pretty well.

For those readers who don't know the story, the main character is Seymour Krelborn (Christopher Kale Jones), who works in Mr. Mushnik (Chris Bloch)'s flower shop on Skid Row. The flower shop is doing badly until Seymour brings in a new plant he bought - Audrey II (voiced by Elliot Dash). Once this interesting and fascinating plant takes up residence, the customers start pouring in. However, "Twoie" has some interesting dietary habits which makes things increasingly complicated for Seymour. He also has to deal with his feelings for the other flower shop employee Audrey (Jenna Coker-Jones), who is dating a "semi-sadist," Dr. Orin (Evan Casey), DDS. How does it all end? Go see the show!

Overall, the show isn't too bad. I was not terribly impressed with Jones or Coker-Jones, but the supporting cast was great, especially the Do-Wop Girls (Felicia Curry, Eleasha Gamble and Kara-Tameika Watkins). They narrate the whole show and play some of the "crowd" characters. Also, the three of them have the best costumes in the show. It's totally true. The set is pretty fantastic. Ford's has two turntables in their stage, so the flower shop has both an inside and an outside that are used. Scenic designer Court Watson did an awesome job with that.

I only have one really big problem with Coy Middlebrook's production. He keeps Elliot Dash, the voice of Audrey II, in view of the audience. This totally breaks the illusion that Audrey II is really speaking for himself (herself?) and is actually really distracting. It doesn't make any sense and I think it was a bad choice. Otherwise, I think the veteran director did a pretty good job overall. 3 stars

Little Shop of Horrors
by Alan Menken and Howard Ashman
Ford's Theatre
directed by Coy Middlebrook
through May 22


Anonymous said…
If you saw one of the preview shows, I think you might want to go back and see the real thing now that it is in production. I have seen the show three times beginning with opening nite; and, while I agree with you that the urchins are amazingly talented and energized and that Evan is hysterical as Orin and his other cameos, gentle-yet-powerfully-voiced-and-wonderfully-acted Seymour (Christopher Kale Jones) and vulnerable-ditsy-loveable Audrey (Jenna Coker-Jones) together with the soul of Audrey (Marc and Scott) are the fantastically talented bones of the show!
Anonymous said…
Anonymous.... I have to agree with you... I feel you have to give credit where credit is due... And the Jones "team" are truly an asset to this production.

Popular Posts