Three Musketeers combines action and comedy
Published: Friday, May 18, 2012
Updated: Friday, May 18, 2012 11:05
It is not often that a play starts with a fight scene in the middle of the audience. However, this was the case in the CTA 131 Theater Laboratory’s performance of The Three Musketeers.
The scene begins with the young D’Artagnan (Zach Ihn) in a heated battle with a man later revealed to be his father (Patrick Richert). This first scene sweeps across the entire theater, eventually coming to a conclusion on the stage, thus beginning the performance.
The play then follows the hot-headed D’Artagnan through his misadventures in the city of Paris as he tries to fulfill his life’s dream of becoming one of the kings Musketeers. Along the way he unites with the three inseparables (the Three Musketeers) and thwarts the evil Cardinal Richelieu’s (Andrew Lien) plot to destroy the order of France, along with the king and queen in the process. Throughout the play D’Artagnan learns the value in family, valor, and friendship, all the while wreaking havoc on the Cardinal’s plans and climbing the ranks from upstart to Musketeer.
This version of “The Three Musketeers” written by Ken Ludwig, marries the action of the Alexandre Dumas novel with refreshingly light humor that provides a new look at an age-old story. The swords of the Musketeers provide the action, while the contrasting personalities in the play provide the comic relief. Some of the particularly comedic moments include King Louis’ (Connor O’Hara) exuberance over attending a ball that he himself created, as well as the continuous advances of D’Artagnan’s young sister (Sabine, Jacalyn Nolan) towards Aramis (Andrew Inouye, one of the Musketeers).
The authenticity of the costume, set, and makeup greatly contributed to the believability of the time period. Continuous work was done to turn the theater stage into an array of over 10 different locations that were necessary for the plot.
One of the most unexpectedly entertaining facets of this play was the various dialogues and action that took place in between scenes while the set was being shifted. At certain points, body carts were rolled onto the stage to pick up the characters that had been dispatched during the previous scene. In other instances, D’Artagnan would wander around the stage making small talk with other characters in the play.
Overall, the acting in the play was rather inspired with believable performances by all of the main characters and the audience was engaged from the moment it began to the moment the actors walked off stage. The over-the-top personalities mixed with the realistic fight scenes made for a very entertaining performance.