13: THE MUSICAL for the Young at Heart

by Lila Achuff

Readers, you don’t have to be a teen or a tween to enjoy 13: THE MUSICAL, by Jason Robert Brown and Dan Elish, a light, sweet story about the trials and tribulations of entering the 13th year of life, but it helps if you’re young at heart, have the sense of humor that you might not have had when you were 13 (You do have it now, right?), and you enjoy reminiscing about that time; and if you could use a shot of positive energy in your being, then keep in mind that you only have this coming weekend to not miss the opportunity to get your spirit(s) lifted at The Playcrafters of Skippack.

(L to R, Front to Back) Vicki Finley, Sarah Shin, Jesse O'Brien, Hayley Derbyshire, Emily Tolnay, Reaghan Murphy, Alyssa Marino, Savannah Jones, Lauryn Jones, Georgia Naples, members of the cast of 13: THE MUSICAL, at Playcrafters of Skippack through November 7.

See if you can relate to this: Evan Goldman (played by Matt O’Connor or Anthony Dippolito, depending on which night you go) has to move from New York to Appleton, oh, no, Indiana following his parents’ divorce. To make matters worse, it’s time for him to be celebrating his bar mitzvah, a rite of passage for a young Jewish boy entering his 13th year, the beginning of his manhood, AND he’s the new kid on the block. Yikes! In Evan’s attempt to please his new so-called friends, a comedy of errors ensues. A mix of bullying, threats and jealousy leads to friendship, caring and ultimately understanding. Luckily, we’re not getting out of this without many teachable moments in the show with the overall message leading up to “We all have ‘A Little More Homework’ to do. Many opps for discussions, Mom and Dad.

David Deratzian, as director of this teenage musical, you must have had a blast working with this young lively group of actors, singers and dancers. We’re not talking perfection by any stretch, but no matter. A good time was had by all! And wasn’t it a hoot when the rear doors on stage kept opening as if they had a life of their own? Gotta love it! Musically speaking, I would have preferred that the volume of the drums be lessened so that we could hear the performers give it their best. Suzanne Rainear, the choreographer: well done! They pulled it off! Aren’t you proud?

Take the kids, take the grandkids and their buds! It’s a small theatre; there’s one seat just for you!

FYI: Leave a little extra time to visit the shop nearby, Floral & Hardy of Skippack. Very unique finds!

Music & Lyrics by Jason Robert Brown
Book by Dan Elish
Directed by David Deratzian
October 29 – November 7, 2010
Playercrafters of Skippack
2011 Store Road
Skippack, PA


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