If you enjoyed skits on the Carol Burnett show (I know I am showing my age) or Saturday Night Live then you will enjoy 4 WEDDINGS AND AN ELVIS at The Village Players of Hatboro. Just like the title says: it is a four act comedy with a wedding and an “Elvis” in each act set in a Las Vegas wedding chapel.
I saw this production on opening night; some of the actors were a little nervous and pacing at times a little slow but I am sure future performances will only improve because the talent overall is there on the stage. Not all Elvis(es)…(or is it Elvi?) are created or acted equal in this production but my favorite is Greg Davis as Elvis/John in the first act. Doug Tague as Lou does a short one which I am hoping is supposed to be a really bad job of impersonating Elvis. Doug is very likable as Lou; but that cane seems to upstage him.
I have to give a shout out to Edward A. Young as Marvin (he was marvelous); he has a great command of the stage and really drove the show when he was on stage. I could have envisioned this character played by Tim Conway or Martin Short in their prime; but Mr. Young did an outstanding job on his own without doing a parody of the character. I really believed he was Marvin! His character is employed by the US Postal Service (as a retiree of the USPS I have to give kudos to the playwright for doing her diligent research). It didn’t hurt that his partner in crime, Colleen Mackle as Fiona, was just as good; I wouldn’t want to meet her in a dark alley. Kyle Aptacy as Fist shared the stage with Marvin and Fiona; he will continue to settle into his role but I liked that he was going for what seemed to be a parent of a Jersey Shore character.
Gina Salamone as Sandy is the owner of the wedding chapel and therefore is in all of the acts. The program says that this is Gina’s debut as an actor; she did a good job for her first time in a difficult role. This character is the traffic cop/straight person for all the other characters. In the second act with Vanessa (Debbie Lewis) and Bryce (Richard Hall) it seemed like she was trying to herd cats! Both Debbie and Bryce were good as their characters but needed to let go more and have lots of fun. Sharon Cerauli as Bev and Jon Zucker as Stan in the first act have boring characters and started the show in the slow lane; but Gina as Sandy does try her best to keep them moving along.
In another review of mine I wrote that less is better; well, in this one I suggest that more would be better! I think the director played it too safe; the set, costumes and actors in total needed to be waaaaay over the top. Instead of Stan’s costume being mismatched and ill-fitting…put him in a leisure suit and give him a big 1990s cell phone instead of a cheap one (and please have the actor remove his wedding ring in the scene when he is GOING to get married). I believe the results would deliver some belly laughs instead of smiles and grins from the audience.
But overall, 4 WEDDINGS AND AN ELVIS was a fun and entertaining evening while the ticket price is unbelievable at $12 ($10 Sunday matinee). I highly recommend going to see this show and supporting The Village Players of Hatboro.
4 WEDDINGS AND AN ELVIS
by Nancy Frick
Directed by Fran Carroll
January 6-21, 2012
The Village Players of Hatboro
401 Jefferson Ave
Hatboro, PA 19040