This past Friday night I had the privilege of seeing Little Shop of Horrors at Playmakers Theater in Covington, Louisiana, under the direction of Lynn and RAndy Perkins.
This 1960s inspired musical tells the tale of Seymour (Alexander Sibley), an assistant to Mr. Mushnik (Ed Morvant) at a skid row flower shop who discovers a new breed of plant that feeds on human flesh and blood. Seymour later finds love with Audrey (Charlotte Voelkel), rescues her from an abusive relationship with Dr. Scrivello (Cameron Welch) in a rather unconventional way, and they live happily ever after… or do they?
I spoke with the cast’s leading lady following Friday night’s performance. Ms. Voelkel is currently a Theatre student at Loyola University, who recently played the role of JoAnne in their Big Easy Award winning production of Godspell. Her past Playmakers credits include Cassandra in Cats and Maureen in RENT. Audrey has been one of her most challenging roles that has brought her outside of her comfort zone, as this is the first time she has had to speak with an accent and it is one of the sexiest characters she has played. One would never know this was a challenge for her as she belted out “Suddenly Seymour” with ease alongside Mr. Sibley.
I asked Ms. Voelkel why folks should come see the show, and she responded saying that the show is weird, entertaining, and hilarious, as well as being blessed with a talented cast, few weak spots, and a huge man-eating plant puppet that talks. I will wholeheartedly vouch for Ms. Voelkel’s assessment of this production.
This cast is indeed full of talent and managed to keep their audience, including myself, laughing to the point of tears during the musical number “Dentist” in which Dr. Scrivello reveals why he became a dentist in the first place. It is unexpected, slightly creepy, but mostly hysterical. On-stage chemistry between the principle actors is apparent especially between Sibley and Morvant as they performed “Mushnik and Son,” a humerous number when Mr. Mushnik asks Seymour to be his son.
Everyone can enjoy this show, and whether you are a theatre lover or just need to laugh, I would encourage you to see it before it closes. Little Shop of Horrors has four remaining performances on July 26, 27, and 28 at 8:00pm and July 29 at 2:00pm. Call (985) 893-1671 to reserve tickets.