Note: Entire Contents Copyright 2016 by Tony Annicone
The beautiful set is by William Davis while the multitude of seven costumes per cast member is by Emily Tardish. Nate Suggs and Joel Kipper as Bob and Phil are spectacular in their roles. Nate gets to sing "Love and the Weather", "Count Your Blessings" and "How Deep is the Ocean" with Bob's true love, Betty. Joel displays his voice in the show stopping "I Love a Piano" with his gal, Judy where they do an astonishing tap dance with the chorus. He and she also do "The Best Things Happen When You're Dancing" with a Fred and Ginger style dance which then turns into a polka. I last reviewed Nate in "Anything Goes" as Billy. I first reviewed Joel in "George M" at Theatre by the Sea back in 2008. The guys also do a comic version of "Sisters" which brings the house down with sustained laughter.
The two leading ladies are also sensational. Stefani Wood and Maria Logan are fabulous as Betty and Judy with their dynamite voices and dancing prowess. They do a marvelous job with "Sisters" and of course in the title number. Stefani's voice soars with Nate in their duets but one of her prettiest songs is "Love, You Didn't Do Right by Me" when she thinks Bob doesn't love her anymore. Maria also displays her strong voice and does a bang up job during "I Love a Piano" with Joel where she taps on top of a toy piano and the trio with Stefani and Susann called "Falling Out of Love Can be Fun" which is a hoot. It is an Andrews sisters, three part harmony number.
Mark Cartier does a topnotch job as the curmudgeon, General Waverly. He pretends to be gruff with his men but becomes a softie around his granddaughter who has him wrapped around her little finger. Susann Flecther is phenomenal as Martha, the manager of the inn. She steals many a scene with her wise cracks and her dynamite song and dance is "Let Me Sing and I'm Happy" which stops the show with her expertise. Her high kicks and cart wheel are perfect and her belting voice is marvelous, too. Susann's trio number with Stefani and Maria is another crowd pleaser. Casey Nadzam as Susan, the General's granddaughter also steals many a scene. She gets to sing "Let Me Sing and I'm Happy" in the second act which brings much laughter. She displays a lot of talent at a young age. However it is the dancers in the show that bring magic to the stage with their dance numbers in "Happy Holiday", "Blue Skies", "How Deep is the Ocean", "Sisters" and the dynamic "White Christmas" which brings a smile to your face and a tear to your eye. So for a musical treat that the whole family can thoroughly enjoy and savor, be sure to catch "White Christmas" at Ocean State Theatre Company before time runs out. Tell them Tony sent you.