by Lorie Lewis Ham
If you are looking for a perfect show to take the whole family to this holiday season, Meet Me in St. Louis presented by Good Company Players is a perfect choice!
Though set in 1904 just before the World’s Fair opened in St. Louis, Missouri, the story of this play could just as easily be set now. Mr. Smith has just been promoted to run his company’s business in New York, and his family is not happy. His kids do not want to leave behind their schools and their friends, and the city they love. The older two girls also do not want to leave behind the boys they are interested in. There’s also a big dance and the Worlds Fair that they just can’t miss! So the girls decide to sabotage the move by convincing their father’s boss he can’t control his family so he’s not suited to run a business. The story is filled with mischievous fun, misunderstandings, teen drama, and the love of home and family.
The two younger girls are quite the trouble makers and do most of the mischief, but their older two sisters, Rose and Esther, do their fair share. Unfortunately, it goes too far with bad consequences and Rose may make things even worse by trying to fix the trouble caused by speaking without thinking. The one son Lon is in college and spends most of his time worrying about the attention of the snooty young Lucielle Pentard, who just moved there from New York.
The girls are all double cast; we saw the cast for Friday’s and Sunday matinees. Rose, the oldest, was played by Bailey Johnson. Esther, the second to the oldest, was played by Emily Estep. The two younger girls were played by Vera Price and Madeline Wristen. Other cast members include Kara Douglas and Patrick Smith as their parents, and Jeff Dinmore (recently seen in GCP’s production of Shadowlands) as Grandpa. There’s also all of the boyfriends, girlfriends, maid, the father’s boss and coworker, and a couple of others. They all do a good job of presenting this fun family drama, dosed with a nice amount of comedy, which is suitable to take the entire family to.
Meet Me in St. Louis runs at 2nd Space in Fresno until December 20. More info can be found on the KRL GCP event page, and their website.
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