Treasure Island: A Young Boy’s Adventurous Tale of Piracy on the Tropical Seas
Review of Treasure Island
Presented by Outcry Youth Theatre
The opening night cast of Outcry Youth Theatre brought to life a high energy, in-depth adaptation by Ken Ludwig of Robert Louis Stevenson’s classic adventure Treasure Island, directed by Becca Johnson-Spinos. At the center of this pirate adventure are Jim Hawkins (Will McDonald) and the infamous Long John Silver (Logan Beutel), supported by an ensemble of talented young actors playing multiple roles.
Young McDonald has just the right amount of vulnerability to portray the sometimes conflicted and ever growing persona of Jim Hawkins. Buetel shines as Long John Silver, seamlessly portraying the charming and sincere man and the darker, cutthroat pirate. Buetel’s vocal nuances were on point even when the dialogue required the actor to raise his voice to a loud pitch for emphasis; some of the other content in the show was performed in a more screaming tone which was sometimes challenging in such close quarters. Buetel, as Silver, also did a great job playing guitar and leading the cast as they spiritedly performed sea shanties.
David Allsup gave a superb performance as Ben Gunn, a man gone slightly mad and “wild” from living in isolation on an island for a few years.
Other standout performances of the night included Fallon Goldsmith’s endearingly humorous and outlandish Squire Trelawney, Elizabeth Belilty’s determined and capable Captain Smollett, and Dylan Cantu’s habitually drunk and sometimes abusive Billy Bones.
Outcry Youth Theatre’s presentation of Treasure Island features several well-choreographed fight scenes with nicely done slow motion action. The cast also did a number of fun, dance routines accompanied by their renditions of the lively sea shanties. This tremendously talented group of young actors, skillfully depicted a complex, multi-faceted tale in the minimal space of a black box theater. Although a bit long at three and half hours even with one 15 minute break, my family, especially my two 14-year-olds, very much enjoyed the opening night performance.
Treasure Island runs through February 11, 2018 at the Studio Theatre inside the Addison Conference and Theatre Center. The length and content of the show may be better suited for ages 13 and up. Tickets and more information at https://www.outcrytheatre.com/treasure-island.
Photo credit: Gabrielle Grafath
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