EDGESby Benj Pasek and Justin Paul
Directed by Mark Mullino
Set Lighting Design – William R. Park
Angel Velasco- Man 1
Calvin Scott Roberts- Man 2
Nikki McDonald- Woman 1
Brett Warner Hurt- Woman 2
Reviewed Performance: 12/14/2013
Reviewed by Jake McCready, Associate Critic for John Garcia's THE COLUMN
PFAMILY ARTS presents Edges in the Wingspan Advisors Theatre with a warm welcoming feeling. Some lucky audience members sit in elegant, comfortable chairs at the thrust of the stage. Smooth jazz plays throughout the theatre and sets a calming mood as audience members converse in small talk.
The show itself is an absolute treat. William R. Park’s lighting and set design are the perfect combination for this concert which is not specific in location or time. His design is simple yet effective and flows evenly between light cues. The use of levels and wood panels provide a skeleton through which the band can be seen.
Director Mark Mullino does an amazing job of casting and staging this non-specific song cycle. He uses the space well with creative and motivated blocking that helps to move the story of each song along. Mullino has selected the perfect cast with the ability to astonish audience members with their raw, natural talent. Mullino himself made up half of the two-man band effortlessly plucking away at the piano upstage of the action. His investment as not only director, but musical director is greatly beneficial to round out his entire image or idea of Edges.
The actors wore common street clothes with a little addition here and there to help differentiate between characters. No costume designer was listed so one can assume that they costumed themselves. It was nice to get a sense of these characters simply by the clothes they wore. For example, a letter jacket worn to represent a high school teenager, a comfortable button down to represent the care-free lifestyle of a young man.
The cast works beautifully as an ensemble; each one providing a different array of skills that together mesh like peanut butter and jelly. Specifically, Angel Velasco and Calvin Scott Roberts are a dynamic duo performing “Pretty Sweet Day” with impeccable comedic timing. Brett Warner Hurt pulls at heart strings and brings audience members close to tears in “Perfect”. Nikki McDonald, however, stands out as an all-around super star. She has the ability to belt her face off which in turn will melt your face off. The company works together and is truly outstanding as a unit in “Become”, “Coasting”, “Be My Friend” and “Like Breathing”.
Do yourself a favor and go see Edges. It will be a refreshing concert of nothing but talent and a good time. If you’ve ever found yourself questioning life, looking for love or just feeling heartache, you will relate to this emotionally-filled musical. While you’re there be sure to check out the artwork in the lobby area of the theatre by Mark Mullino himself. Each one is based on a popular musical or pop song and has musical notes and lyrics in the background of the portrait. They are beautiful and if I had the money to divvy out, I would own them all.
LakeSide Market, 4017 Preston Road #544 , Plano, TX, 75093
Runs through December 21st
Thursday at 7:30 pm, Friday and Saturday at 8:00 pm and Saturday at 2:30 pm
Tickets are $35.00 and $25.00 for students/seniors.
For information, go to http://www.pfamilyarts.org or call the box office at 972-378-1234