Having a cast of 90 people can be a crazy experience, but On Pitch Performing Arts has done a spectacular job at achieving an amazing show! Under the direction of Heather Ann Jackson, this cast and crew has created something so magical for all audience members. It was very apparent as well that the cast was having a blast onstage, which is something so wonderful to see. For younger and older audiences, this show is bound to give you a wonderful experience in all aspects of theatre!
Starting the show off strongly, it was mind boggling to see just how well the cast was used in the opening song "Fathoms Below". The ensemble was extremely strong in their movements, dancing, and singing, and carried it well throughout the whole show. Having them use the aisles helped pull us audience members right into the show even more! Choreographer Bailey Porter was able to very effectively choreograph the show, and having to choreograph some of the most iconic songs, expectations were already set high from the start, and executed phenomenally. Porter was also able to showcase a few cast members and show off their higher abilities and experience that really captured my attention in some of the bigger numbers. Some of these dancers were Miriam Wolsey, Christy Rolfe, and Carly Haberman. Wolsey and Rolfe were usually placed in the front for big dance numbers, and stood out to me in every number. Their gorgeous lines and great execution was wonderful to watch. Haberman also stole the show during "Positoovity", specifically at the end, which showcased what a spectacular tap dancer Haberman truly was!
A few other cast members that really stood out to me were Aspen Larkin, Jaxon Alvord, John Wright, Ashley Ramsey, Flash Kieran, and Gavin McCormack. Larkin did an absolutely beautiful job of keeping the beloved princess bubbly, innocent, and so very sweet. I find a lot of the times when I see productions with this character, people tend to take a bit more of an argumentative direction for Ariel. However, I loved how Larkin kept it to be more continuously passionate about what the characters objective was throughout the show. Not to mention, Larkin also had a lovely voice that is just what you could ever possibly want to hear from Ariel. Alvord, who played Prince Eric, had a spectacular voice that was captivating to listen to and really showed off his voice in his solo songs. The crustaceous Sebastian played by Wright really showcased some wonderful vocals in the song "Under the Sea" and brought such a loving and kind character to Sebastian. If you're looking for a powerful, funny, dangerous, and merciless Ursula, look no further. Ramsey's portrayal of the villainous sea witch, Ursula, is perfection! Her strong voice and evil laugh brought her character even further into becoming a villain that you couldn't help but love. Along with her underwater sidekicks Flotsam (Kiernan) and Jetsam (McCormack), they brought the perfect amount of darkness to the show. Kiernan and McCormack also had a great chance to show off how strong of singers they both were with their tight and fabulous harmonies in the song "Sweet Child".
Not only was the talent immaculate for this production, but the technical design was able to pull it all even more together. Lighting Designer, Christine Detweiler, did a great job at taking us under the sea. Her lighting design and choices specifically for the beautiful quartet "If Only" gave me literal chills. Set Design by Brandon Stauffer was unlike anything else I had ever seen for this show, which I highly appreciated. I really loved how well each set piece just tied the show together more and more. And finally, Costume design by Alli Linhart was the final piece to making an already spectacular show even better! Every single cast member in this very large cast looked absolutely phenomenal. (My favorite costumes by far were the Mersister's and Ursula's costumes.) Having such elaborate and fun costumes to look at all night really helped set the tone right from the beginning that this was going to be an exceptional show.
If you're looking for something fun to do to end your summer on a high note, I highly recommend getting tickets to the show! For years, "The Little Mermaid" has been claimed as one of the most beloved Disney films, and we've been so lucky to have such a wonderful stage adaptation. On Pitch Performing Arts has done a fantastic job winning the hearts of all who have the opportunity to see the show. This production runs at Layton High School until August 12th, so get your tickets fast!
Theatre matters, Theatre is important, and theatre is impactful.