Andrea McArdle is absolutely marvelous in the title role of MAME, currently playing at Bucks County Playhouse.
The woman who as a child, went from Northeast Philadelphia to Broadway in 1977 as the first “Annie” is simply stunning in the current New Hope Season 2013 opening.
McArdle’s voice is rich, beautiful, sensuous and strong. Additionally, she has terrific stage presence, wears her costumes well and looks younger than her 49 years.
An 11-piece orchestra crammed into the balcony offers underscoring for her and the talented cast that surrounds her.
Outstanding comedienne Lea DeLaria has perfect timing in both her delivery and her singing as Mame’s best friend, Vera, the role Bea Arthur played opposite Lucille Ball in the movie.
JD Troiolo delightfully plays and sings the role of Mame’s young nephew, Patrick. Troiolo comes with impressive local theatrical experience for his young age.
Jennifer Bissell as Agnes Gooch, Kelly Briggs as Babcock, Andy Joos as Beauregarde and Matthew Wojtal as the older Patrick – all Equity actors – were equally fine in their roles.
But it is McArdle who carries this show. Lighting up the stage when she enters with her confident carriage, delivery and throaty singing, she has reinvented the role of Mame which once belonged to Angela Lansbury and Lucille Ball.
Andrea McArdle has made this role her own.
Book by Jerome Lawrence and Robert E. Lee
Music and Lyrics by Jerry Herman
Directed by Jesse Cline
Choreography by Dann Dunn
Musical Direction by Tom Fosnocht
May 23-June 9, 2013
Bucks County Playhouse
70 S Main St
New Hope, PA 18938