THE BIBLE: THE COMPLETE WORD OF GOD (ABRIDGED)By Adam Long, Reed Martin, and Austin Tichenor
Amphibian Stage Productions
Directed by Jay Duffer
Scenic Designer – Sean Urbantke
Costume Designer – Brittny Mahan
Lighting Designer – Kenneth Farnsworth
Sound Designer – David Lanza
Props Master – Stefany Cambra
Scenic Artist – Christina McCormick
Stage Manager – Linsey Retcofsky
Reviewed Performance: 7/8/2017
Reviewed by Angela Newby, Associate Critic for John Garcia's THE COLUMN
This tongue-in-cheek cheesiness is from the brilliant minds of Adam Long, Reed Martin, and Austin Tichenor (who also brought The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (Abridged)) to life as well. There is no room in the script or the improve to show lack of respect for The Bible, but does point out some of the not so finer stories that Christians would sometimes like to forget! Add in some great pop culture references and the audience is in for a treat.
Director Jay Duffer brought together three amazing actors that nail the comradery that this script needs. Their chemistry worked well together on stage and their harmonies were beautiful in the musical numbers are a highlight of the show.
Sean Urbantke’s scenic design was beautiful. The set was a gorgeous brick church with a pipe organ (pipes visible from across the stage) with a wonderful wrought iron gate and a balcony to add to the dimension of the stage. The maze on the “marble” floor was intricate and a detail that added to the richness of the set.
Costumes by Brittny Mahan were fabulous. The main costumes for the actors were a tunic with belt and robe, which are all what one would picture of a biblical time period. Where Mahan was brilliant though was with the use of coats, wigs and hats to distinguish between all of the characters in The Bible. Yet, it was in the costumes for the women that had the audience in stiches. The beautiful belly dancer costume was provocative and added to actor on stage.
Kenneth Farnsworth with lighting design was perfectly timed and set the tone of the play. The spotlight was perfectly used to direct the audience to the part of the set that was in use. The use of flashing lights helps show the creation story, while the blue, purple, and red highlight the carnival scene. Farnsworth did a wonderful job that only enhanced the production.
Sound Designer, David Lanza, made the production for the unseen aspects of the play. Sound was used to highlight elements of the stories such as the carnival music, and the musical numbers. Execution never missed a note and each element highlighted the scene in action.
Aaron Fouhey was the most serious of the three actors on stage and was the perfect addiction to the cast. His fatherly demeanor was perfect for the God vocals and narration for the majority of the play. Fouhey’s talent on the piano and vocals though was what blew me away and made the play! Brandon Murphy’s facial expressions were to die for. His raised eyebrows and expressive eyes always let the audience know what was going on with his character. Watch out for his obsession with one Bible story. When it happens, you will not want to miss out on the true gift that Murphy has been given!
Scott Zenreich was the comedic relief to the show and heaviness of the stories. Zenreich played each of the female characters and nailed it. His joy exuberated from him and it was a delight to watch him do his craft. Zenreich’s wide smile never left his face except when he was confused and his pout perfectly showed his zany personality.
Amphibian Stage Productions is a gem to the DFW theater community. The Bible has everything one is looking for in a night on the town, comedy, tragedy, a little mystery, but most importantly a company that loves what they do and it shows in every element.
Amphibian Stage Productions
120 S. Main Street, Fort Worth, TX 76104
Runs through August 13, 2017
Thursday, Friday, and Saturday at 8:00 pm, and Sunday at 2:00 pm. Tickets are $33.00. Discounts are available for seniors (60 and older), groups of 10 or more, and students/teachers with a valid ID. For information and to purchase tickets, go to www.amphibianproductions.org or call the box office at 817-923-3012.