By Diva Amanda Swartz
GRAND BEND – An emotional high was evident in the opening day audience as it gave a much deserved standing ovation to the cast of ‘Sister Act’ playing at Huron Country Playhouse in Grand Bend.
Many have known and loved the movie version of ‘Sister Act’ since Whoopi Goldberg first appeared in this film, but now after seeing the live musical performance, they likely will forever be an even bigger fan of the musical. The energy and soul put into this show by the entire ensemble, from cast to choreography, made this show stand out above both the film version and other musicals.
Aurianna Angelique, who played Deloris Van Cartier or Sister Mary Clarence, wowed the audience with her commanding and captivating voice. This Diva gave a sassier and more confident edge to her character that had the audience dancing in their seats along with her performances.
Lee Siegel (Curtis) and his gang, Gerrard Everard (Joey), David Lopez (TJ), and Oscar Moreno (Pablo), gave great renditions of the bad guys that everyone loves. Their comedic portrayals of 1978 Phili gangsters gave everyone a good laugh, even making their song about killing Deloris seem amusing with some ‘Can-Can’ style high kicks, hip sways, and funky background singing.
Other performances to be rejoiced were by Matthew G. Brown (Eddie), who not only performed well on stage, but also had the best costume change in the play with not just one, but two tearaway costumes. Also, Susan Gilmour (Mother Superior), Lorraine Foreman (Sister Mary Theresa), Susan Johnston Collins (Sister Mary Patrick), Amanda Leigh (Sister Mary Martin-of-Tours), Laura Mae Nason (Sister Mary Robert), and Rebecca Poff (Sister Mary Lazarus), portrayed their characters in tune with the Sisters that everyone knows and loves from the film, but with some added funk and pazzazz. Truly each performer should be praised for their part in bringing immense joy to the audience through spectacular dance and song.
From the glowing red ‘Sister Act’ sign to the beautiful, versatile, and impressive sliding stage, this musical would not have been complete without the creative hands of the production team.
So much goes into taking a live play from great to outstanding. Lisa Stevens helped it achieve this with her fantastic, comical, and powerful choreography, as did Rachel Berchtold who designed the ever impressive costumes.
Director Max Reimer and his crew should be proud of this entertaining, witty, and hilarious musical that had the audience laughing and smiling until their cheeks hurt. Big praise goes out to the entire ensemble for their collaboration in creating something truly soulful.
Don’t miss your chance to see this dynamic performance! On stage until June 25.
Tickets, $44 regular, $36 preview, $26 youth under 20, are available by calling the box office at 1-855-372-9866 or visiting online.