Review: Rapunzel

When I went to my first show, “Miss Electricity” at the Workhouse Arts Center’s Studio 3, I thought they did a good job.  The show was cute, my kids had fun, they did a good job.

Then they did “Home“.  I didn’t get to see it, but those of you that went with your preschoolers raved to me about the creative tale of two kids and a box. 

 When I went to “Rapunzel” on final dress rehearsal two weeks ago, I was floored.  What was already good has improved so much.  The company is utilizing every inch of space in their intimate performance area, the lights and sounds are spot-on, I am truly impressed by how far they’ve come from “good” in such a short time!  (Especially since they produce these show back to back on a few week flip schedule!)

Here’s the deal with Rapunzel.  The show is truly about what’s right, what’s wrong, and what you’d sacrifice to get what you want temporarily.  Helicopter moms, it’s also talking to you 😉 

While all the characters were well-portrayed, I did have a few favorites. 

The witch, played by Kindra Cook, was by far my favorite Studio 3 character to date.  Obviously skilled with children (her own child was at the dress rehearsal), she is able to take a baby-snatching, spell-slinging witch and make her, perhaps not entirely lovable, but understandable.  I could relate to the witch! I don’t want my babies out in the world getting hurt or running off with some prince, either!  (Okay, fine, and my children would probably tell you that when they cross me bad things happen, too!) 

Credit: Melanie Beys

If there was another show stopper, I would say it was  Anna Jackson and Chris Galindo, who played the two headed monster.  My children came home and duct-taped their dragon costumes together to play their character, which provided comic relief, as well as being an unlikely aid to Rapunzel as she tried to escape.  I hope to see both of these actors again at the Workhouse!!

Rapunzel, played by Ashley San, is loveable and does a sweet performance as the bubbly and naive princess, although my daughter, having seen the magical hair in Tangled, was unimpressed with her very curly VERY large wig and kept asking me if she could do Rapunzel’s hair!  I know this character is probably truer to the original, but I really loved Mandy Moore’s self-sufficient cast-iron wielding movie version, which I missed here.

Credit: Melanie Beus

We’ve seen Eben Kuhns (Prince) before, and always find him warm and believable.  I think my 4 year old is infatuated with him (sorry, Eben, if you’re reading this!), although she always chickens out of a picture with him after the show.  🙂 

Parents with sensory-sensitive children should note there are a few instances of flashing lights and loud noises, but they are very brief and they are followed quickly with humor.  If you’re unsure, note that the theater is small enough that making it to the door shouldn’t be a problem.  There are a few times when characters use the aisle to the right hand side (facing the stage), so if you have to exit, I would go via the door you came in, and pick seats accordingly. 

The show is 1 hour with an intermission at the 1/2 hour.  Tickets are $12 adults; $8 children under 12 years old.  At intermission, cupcakes from Sugar Buzz in Occoquan are available for $2.50 as well as beverages.  

Studio 3’s Rapunzel
Pros: Very well done show, local, affordable tickets, intermission is well placed and the hour run time keeps a great pace for keeping children entertained

Cons:  I did not have any particular issues (besides my daughter’s obsession with re-styling Rapunzel’s wig), but in reading other reviews from people who went on a show day rather than dress rehearsal, I’ve heard that the lines at intermission and for meet the cast after the show can run rather long.  

Overall- Go see the show!  Studio 3 is doing some fantastic work, and I can’t wait for their next performance, either (Winnie the Pooh).  With the limited running of each show, it’s important that you get your tickets early!!  Rapunzel is here until June 30th, and we’ve learned quickly that with Studio 3, the tickets run out long before interest in the show does!