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"Oliver!" takes the stage at Beef & Boards

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

REVIEW

By FRANK and LINDA PHILLIPS

frankphi@hotmail.com

"Please, Sir, I want some more!"

With those words, we meet Oliver Twist at Beef and Boards' latest production, "Oliver!"

Eddie Curry leads the cast in the role of Fagin, a part that seems better suited to him than any we've seen to date.

Fagin is a likeable scoundrel who provides for homeless boys of London as they provide for him through thievery.

Charles Dickens, author of "Oliver Twist," often exposed British weakneses. In "Oliver!" the lack of adequate care for orphans encourages pickpocket operations like that of Fagin's. But, apart from the dark messages, "Oliver" is bright, funny and loaded with endearing music from the pen of Lionel Bart.

Curry, an ISU alumnus, shines in leading the troupe in "Pick A Pocket Or Two" and "Be Back Soon," a rousing number that brings Act One to a close all too soon.

Equally outstanding is Nicole Sterling, the female lead, who plays Nancy (a wonderful singer and actress); Kyle Durbin as The Artful Dodger and Ty Stover as Mr. Bumble. (Where have you been, Ty, we've missed your performances!)

Parents warn your children about Bill Sykes, portrayed all too convincingly by Duane McDevitt. His portrayal of the villain is well worth seeing.

Last mentioned, with just as much talent as his adult co-stars, is Sawyer Harvey as Oliver. His face may be familiar from various commercials he has done in the Indianapolis area. The fifth-grader attends school in Franklin Township and has been in various Beef & Boards productions. He played "Chip" in "Beauty and the Beast."

"I never expected 'Oliver!' to be like that," Linda said.

She had seen the movie version on TV and was surprised by the number of songs that made the show much more cheery and brighter than the movie version.

She was also surprised that some of her favorite, rousing songs come from "Oliver," including "Food, Glorious Food," "I Shall Scream," "Where Is Love?" "Consider Yourself," "It's a Fine Life," "I'd Do Anything," "As Long As He Needs Me" and "Who Will Buy."

"Oliver" is the company's annual family show. Tickets for children ages 3-15 are half-price for this production.

For tickets and more information, call (317) 872-9664. "Oliver!" is on stage through July 16.

On the Net:

Beef & Boards Dinner theatre:

http://www.beefandboards.com



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