Justin Cortes, Contributing Writer
The UC Theater Department collaborated with the Rome Community Theater to present the murderous musical “Jekyll and Hyde” from Nov. 2 to 5 in the Strebel Student Center Auditorium.
The show was directed by Nick Abounader with musical direction by Rusty Ritzel.
Based on Robert Louis Stevenson’s novel of a similar name, “Jekyll and Hyde” tells the story of a London scientist named Dr. Henry Jekyll who creates a potion that turns him into his murder alter-ego dubbed Edward Hyde.
Soon after taking the formula, Jekyll finds that the evil within him was increased rather than eradicated. His so-called solution to man’s evil becomes his undoing and turns him into a mass murderer, a ravenous creature that would lurk in the night on a bloodthirsty rampage.
The overall play itself was quite amusing, but there were some small effects that could have been corrected. Lighting was one detail that could have been perfected because whether you were in the front or the back of the theater, you either were blinded by the beaming lights or saw less of the stage.
In spite of the lighting, the orchestra and the actors kept up with the tempo of the melodies. Every actor gave strong performances, especially Shane Archer Reed, who portrayed Jekyll and Hyde. He switched from an innocent, soon-to-be-wed doctor, to a blood-thirsty fiend.
Usually during a performance, there is a point in the show when an actor could either go over the top or hit the perfect amount acting to really tap into the theme of the musical. Reed did so perfectly between scenes of dialogue and scenes with musical numbers. It is plays like this that should come to the Strebel Auditorium more often.