Review: BEGUILED AGAIN at Florida Rep
Florida Rep is kicking off its 26th season with Beguiled Again, and this is Rodgers and Hart as you’ve probably never heard them. Most of the best known numbers are there, but instead of the familiar chorus, we’re treated to verse after verse of Hart’s witty lyrics. There are plenty of more obscure songs too.
The three men (Jonathan Brugioni, Matt Gibson, and Logan Marks) and three women (Halley Daigle Saez, Kim Morgan Dean, and Carolann M. Sanita) also have the challenge of sometimes singing multiple songs juxtaposed in counterpoint. With a cast of six, we get to hear the gamut of possibilities: solos, duets, trios, quartets, and a couple complex sextets. One of the six part numbers was sung a capella. Stunning doesn’t begin to cover it.
Individually, each of the six has a strong voice. A lot of belting occurs, so a quieter moment like the pianissimo finish of “Why Can’t I?” by Marks takes your breath away. Saez shows comedic flair, sometimes breaking the fourth wall to kibbitz with audience members. The intimacy of the small Artstage Studio Theatre lets the audience see every expression that crosses the actors’ faces.
While the first act features a cavalcade of costumes, the second act is all tuxes, glitzy jumpsuits, and a mirror ball. The staging by Michael Marotta is cleverly done in the limited space. Kudos also to pianist and Musical Director Andrew Smithson and drummer Miguel Azcuy.
This delightful musical review runs through Oct. 29, 2023. For tickets, call239.332.4488