Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Theatre Review: Excellent cast, crew present charming whirlwind of events in "Rose and the Rime"

By Joe Kirkish, Michigan Tech faculty emeritus
Posted Feb. 11, 2014 on Tech Today
Reprinted with permission

Rose (in red) is lifted into the air for her journey to find the rime witch who has cursed her town with perpetual winter -- in Michigan Tech's production of Rose and the Rime. It will be performed a second weekend at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Friday and Saturday, Feb. 13, 14, 15. (Photos courtesy Patricia Helsel, director and Michigan Tech associate professor, Visual and Performing Arts)

The other night I saw a production in Michigan Tech's McArdle Theatre. It's called Rose and the Rime, a charming mix of fairy tale, music, Cirque du Soleil, Noh Play and critters of every sort. It is set within an eye-popping, ever-changing setting of yards of voluminous material on which moving abstract projections appear and disappear to suggest a variety of places -- all of them around a Michigan town that's been cursed with perpetual winter by a hideous rime witch. It's up to Rose, a sweet young girl in red, to find the witch, take battle (high in the air) and return the town to its previous four seasons.

With Patricia Helsel conceiving, supervising, and directing a large cast and exceptional tech crew, a simple fairy tale has been turned into a whirling, fast-paced event that grabs you from the opening scene. There, mysterious creatures in blue-grey tights slither in and out of the huge ice-bound arena center stage, and the play moves to Rose's journey, battle with the witch, a falling in love, and, finally, a return to a normal spring back in Rose's home town. It's a whirlwind of events so excitingly and charmingly accomplished by an excellent cast that you are left stunned and very pleasantly entertained with the magic of it all.

Rose confronts the rime witch, who is dramatically suspended in the air.

Everyone from children to adults will truly enjoy this perfectly created dramatic spectacle. It will be presented again at 7:30 p.m. this Thursday, Friday and Saturday, Feb. 13-15. For tickets and more information, call Ticketing Operations, 487-2073.*

*Editor's Note: Click here to read more about the play and the special backstage tour for children on Saturday.

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