PETER AND THE STARCATCHER
May 5, 2012
Oh the elation of seeing theater that reminds you of those heady days when playing make-believe was the most engrossing act in the world. In the same youthful vein, “Peter and The Starcatcher” relies on the most magical of theatrical elements –imagination.
The spare but rich re-telling of Dave Barry and Ridley Pearson's “Peter and the Starcatcher” boasts one of the most engaging casts in the city. Audiences at the Brooks Atkinson Theatre are transported by Rick Elice’s adaptation and thrilling direction by Roger Rees and Alex Timbers. Imagining the roots of the beloved Peter Pan, “Starcatcher” introduces all the seminal characters in their seminal falseness, fearlessnes and purity.
This raucous adventure plays out on the high seas of villainy and righteousness, pitting the noble Lord Aster (Rick Holmes) and protector of “starstuff” against the gloriously smarmy pirate Black Stache (Christian Borle). A single parent, Lord Aster’s thirteen year old daughter Molly, the utterly splendid Celia Keenan-Bolger, shares her father’s intellectual curiosity and loyalty to Queen Victoria.
When the father races off on the Queen’s mission, Molly is left in the hands of the winningly bawdy governess Mrs. Bumbrake (Arnie Burton).
Aboard deck, Molly meets the “lost” orphan boys and snaps into a deep personal connection with the lanky, sympathetic Boy (Adam Chanler-Berat) who becomes Peter and “leads” (only because Molly lets him) the youth brigade. Instead of props and sets depicting locations, the physically and vocally flexible twelve member cast mutates into evocative formations by Steve Hoggett.
All the cast members and creative staff deserve hearty applause. This is the one theater production you really don’t want to miss.
EYE ON THE ARTS, NY---Celia Ipiotis