EAST PROVIDENCE — The East Providence High School Theatre Troop presents its annual spring show next week, this season returning with a production of “The New Mel Brooks Musical Young Frankenstein,” the musical adaptation of Mr. Brook’s fame “Young Frankenstein” film.
Movie lovers, of course, will immediately recognize the title of the show, which is based on Mr. Brook’s hit movie from 1974. The renowned comedy writer teamed with Thomas Meehan to pen the musical. It premiered on Broadway in 2007, running for over a year and 484 performances. Coincidentally, a national tour of the musical began in late 2009 at the Providence Performing Arts Center.
“I saw the show in New York City a few years ago and remembered it being extremely funny,” said EPHS Theatre teacher MaryAnn Lasorsa. “I thought we all needed a good laugh. The show was just released to amateur groups, so I was excited to be able to do it.”
For those not familiar with the plot, “Young Frankenstein” tracks the plight of Dr. Frederick Frankenstein as he contends with the troubling legacy of his grandfather, the mad scientist Dr. Victor Von Frankenstein. Upon learning of an inheritance, the “Young Frankenstein” travels to his grandfather’s laboratory in Transylvania where the hijinks begin.
“It is typical Mel Brooks, funny, slapstick humor, sometimes a bit racy, but all in good fun,” Ms. Lasorsa added. “The plot of the musical parallels the traditional Frankenstein, but our main character is the grandson of a descendant of the original Dr. Frankenstein, and when he is sent to Transylvania to tie up the loose ends of his ancestor’s estate he is reluctant to ‘join the family business’ at first.”
Benjamin Church portrays the lead character, Frederick Frankenstein, the role made famous by Gene Wilder, who co-wrote the original screenplay with Mr. Brooks. Matthew Fagan plays The Monster, portrayed by Peter Boyle in film. Marty Feldman’s bug-eyed Igor character is played in the EPHS production by Dean Hernandez. Lauren Pothier plays Inga, portrayed by Teri Garr on screen. Patti Laliberte is Elizabeth Benning, played by Madeline Kahn in the film. And Monica Bostic has the noteworthy role of Frau Bleucher, portrayed by Cloris Leachman in the movie.
“We are excited about our talented cast and in particular our leads, Ben Church, Lauren Pothier, Patty Laliberte, Matt Fagan, Dean Hernandes and Monica Bostic. We also have a great supporting cast,” Ms. Lasorsa said.
Of note as well from the production, long-time EPHS theatre contributor Jim Manchester, the troop’s stage director, is retiring at the end of the term and “Young Frankenstein” is his final show.
“It will be the last musical that we will collaborate on,” Ms. Lasorsa said of Mr. Manchester. “It may also mean that someone younger steps up to the plate and continues to nurture this long standing tradition in East Providence.”
The East Providence High School Theatre Group presents, “The New Mel Brooks Musical Young Frankenstein,” April 4 at 7 p.m. and April 5 and 6 at 8 p.m. in the EPHS Auditorium. Advanced tickets are $6 for students, $15 for adults. All tickets are $20 at the door.
The New Mel Brooks Musical Young Frankenstein
East Providence High School Theatre Group cast
DR. FREDERICK FRANKENSTEIN: Benjamin Church
THE MONSTER: Matthew Fagan
IGOR: Dean Hernandez
INGA: Lauren Pothier
ELIZABETH BENNING: Patti Laliberte
FRAU BLEUCHER: Monica Bostic
INSPECTOR HANS KEMP: Humberto Rodrigues
THE HERMIT/MR. HILLTOP: Ray Souza
DR. VICTOR VON FRANKENSTEIN: Tyler DaPonte
ZIGGY: Brian Faria
HERALD: Shawn Contente
SHOESHINE: Shawn DaRosa
TELEGRAPH BOY: Joshua Brennan-Andino
PURSER: Audrey Duarte
STEWARD: Andrea Vargas
STUDENT 1: Lauren Vine
STUDENT 2: Madeleine Carroll
STUDENT 3: Cassidy Caduto
MALE VILLAGERS: 1. Sean DaRosa, 2. Shawn Contente, 3. Tyler DaPonte
ENSEMBLE: (GRAVEDIGGERS, VILLAGERS, MEDICAL STUDENTS, MAD SCIENTISTS) Kellie Rock, Sarah Laurianno, Kyle Brown, Emily Hagarty, Allie Morris, Felicia Johnson, Lauren Landry, Taylor Silva, Tyler Tashdjian, Erika Lincoln, Alyssa Flores, Victoria Pilon, Cheyenne Terrien, Heather Lopes, Monica Costa, Carolyn Conti, Hailey St. Onge, Stephaney Buteau, Maggie Esposito-Russell, Brooke Conrad, Hailey Silva, Tatyana Rodrigues, Kyle Brown, Davonte Richard; (DANCING) Marissa Browning, Andrea Vargas, Alexis Thompson, Lauren Vine, Grace Voll, Olivia Soares, Megan St. Hillaire, Paige Macnie, Deja Oakes, Ray Souza, Tyler DaPonte, Shawn DaRosa, Joshua Brennan-Andino, Brian Faria, Humberto Rodrigues, Davonte Richard