Guys and Dolls at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival
Guys and Dolls is a much loved musical with music and lyrics by Frank Loesser. It has been performed many times and made into a movie too. I have seen the movie and also a couple of stage productions but this production is by far and away the best I’ve seen.
Mary Zimmerman directs the top notch cast through a fast paced and uproariously funny show with witty dialog and foot tapping and beloved songs.
The play opens in Times Square New York with gambling crazy Nathan Detroit ( played with comic exuberance by Rodney Gardiner ) trying to find a spot for his floating crap game.
We then meet Adelaide, a night club dancer and Nathans long suffering fiancee who after 14 years wonders if she will ever become a bride. As Nathan ties to find a place for the crap game, along comes Sky Matherson a handsome sinner and gambler who will bet on just about anything. Nathan bets Sky that he can’t take Sarah a straight laced goody two shoes Salvation Army Mission doll to Havana for a night. Sky sets about wooing Sarah, but he unexpectedly falls in love with her.
Guys and Dolls never misses a beat with heavenly vocals and great choreography and an enormously talented cast.
Especially endearing is Robin Goodrin Nordli who gives a absolutely adorably ditsy performance as Adelaide. She stops the show with her renditions of songs ” Sue Me” and ” Take Back Your Mink ” but the most funny and charming song is “Adelaid’s Lament ” (A Poyson Could Develop a Cold) together with sneezing and wheezing, it’s a hoot.
Sky Matherson (played by Jeremy Peter Johnson ) and Sarah Brown (played by Kate Hurster) win the hearts of the audience as the unlikely lovers, they dazzle and delight with songs ” I’ve Never Been in Love before ” and ” I’ll Know “.
You will be humming the tunes all the way home, and probably like us would love to see it for a second time.