The following Cappies review is by Michael Carrillos of Western High School
Soar away on the magical, high-flying journey that is NSU University School’s production of Peter Pan: A Musical Adventure. This production of the timeless piece did not fail to captivate its audience with an enchanting set with truly commemorative performances.
Based on the play “Peter and Wendy: The Boy Who Wouldn’t Grow Up” written by J.M Barrie, the collaboration of George Stiles, Willis Hall, and Anthony Drewe gave birth to a musical that will resonate with its audience in years still to come. Proceeding with its debut in Copenhagen 1996, the first broadcast occurred in the New Year’s Eve Concert 2001. After numerous productions amid the Christmas seasons, a one-off concert took the stage in London’s West End October 25th, 2015. Peter Pan and the Darling Children embark on an adventure towards a vibrant, juvenile liberation. The merciless, yet cowardice Captain Hook and his gang of misfits despise and resist the freedom and dreams the Lost Boys obtain by living wildy.
Across the dangerous sea, an enlightened and youthful Nicolette Nunziato (Wendy) dove into her role with confidence and exceptional facial expressions. While sustaining a manifestation of her blossoming into womanhood, Nunziato contrastingly portrays a lively young girl who yearns to experience an illustrious life. Her chemistry with Evan Eiglarsh (Peter Pan) exploded with tension in “One Big Adventure” creating opposite polarities of a growing, responsible young girl and a child-like, playful young boy. Eiglarsh’s comedic timing provided for excellent relief and added to the high-spirited production. His physicality sparked Neverland into fruition. Eiglarsh used a fly-system to his advantage and did not falter in his singing and acting capabilities whilst gliding among the luminous stars and soft clouds.
Despite an inconsistency with accents and struggle for attention, the cast perfected the night with seamless transitions and inspired themes of growing up and childhood all the same. Notable performances by Anthony Langone (Captain Hook) and Gabriel Feldenkrais (Smee) displayed a humorous chemistry and aided in developing the storyline. Their varietal characteristics balanced each other phenomenally. The low-life, scoundrel Pirates realistically depicted the malicious intentions come that with the obedience instilled by their leader still holding on to their own characteristics. They did not just memorize choreography, but brought it to life and lived it on-stage.
Many facets of the technical categories effectively lured and conveyed the concepts of the show. The hair and make-up team executed a numerous amount of styles to express the different characters and their individualism. Working well with the hair and make-up, the same team seamlessly blended the costumes worn by the cast to transport its audience to London then into Neverland. Not having an orchestra pit did not stop this production from having a live orchestra. The level of difficulty sky-rocketed when the Neverland Band transmitted their orchestration wirelessly through speakers to the actors on-stage. The hard work to communicate cues paid off in the end when their show ran smoothly.
Peter and Wendy rediscovered a new home at NSU University School in their top-tier production of Peter Pan: A Musical Adventure. In the attention to detail and outstanding staging, the cast and crew never failed to draw in the audience and deliver a heartwarming tale of perseverance and friendship.