Lerner and Loewe’s Brigadoon Opens at Waterworks Players

Brigadoon, the 1947 Lerner and Loewe musical, is a romantic tale set in the highlands of Scotland with only one day to find love.

Inspired by Friedrich Gerstacker’s 19th-century tale Germelshausen, Brigadoon tells the story of two game-hunting Americans who stumble upon a Scottish village that disappears in the Highland mist and returns for only one day every hundred years.  There is a bonny lass, Fiona, who is waiting to find her true love.  Tommy Albright, a restless young New Yorker who does not trust his own feelings, learns to trust in hers.  Will Tommy return with his buddy to the frantic pace of New York or will he vanish into the mist with Fiona?  Take a guess which one he chooses.

Alan Lerner and Frederick Loewe may have been romantics, but they were sophisticated songwriters.  This show has a number of classics, including Almost Like Being in Love, The Heather on the Hill, Waitin’ for My Dearie, and Go Home with Bonnie Jean.  There is also a bit of sass mixed into the romance.  Every time the show begins to inflate with emotion, Tommy’s sardonic friend Jeff, punctures it with a pointed gibe.  Jeff is comically pursued by the bold Meg Brockie, who knows she must act quickly to catch a man before the town sleeps for another hundred years.  If this isn’t enough affection, the villagers are busy preparing and celebrating a wedding.  This enchanted village, though, is not perfect.  There is a village malcontent, Harry Beaton, who is twisted with envy and anger.
Jordan Whiley as Tommy Albright and Brenda Barringer as Fiona MacLaren are the two romantic leads who skillfully sing a number of solos and romantic duets.

Christy Moore plays Meg Brockie, one of the classic archetypes of the golden age of musical theater: the sexy comic relief.  And the role fits her like a glove.  Trospy Jarrett is the wisecracking Jeff, Tommy’s sidekick.
Aaron Willoughby and Jennifer Willoughby skillfully play Jean MacLaren and Charlie Dalrymple, the young couple who are to be married on the day the two hunters enter Brigadoon.  Brandon Nuckols does an excellent job portraying the village sage Mr. Lundie, who explains the miracle of Brigadoon to the two travelers.  Brandon Kelly is Harry Beaton, Jean’s jilted suitor who threatens to leave Brigadoon and cause it to vanish forever.
Chorus members are Andrea Bridge, Kristin Davis (Jane), Paul Jenkins (Bartender), Ed Kinman (Archie Beaton), Colin Lee (Angus McGuffie), Daphne Mason, Cathy Matson, Melissa Matson, Christy Moore (Meg Brockie), Carrie Ramsey, Matt Spalding (Angus MacLaren), Aaron Willoughby (Charlie Dalrymple), and Jennifer Willoughby (Jean MacLaren).

Visually, the Waterworks’ black box is transformed into a mystical forest, and the Highlands come alive with colorful tartans, kilts, and lilting Scottish accents, perfected by Matt Spalding as Andrew MacLaren. The Brigadoon marketplace, the pageantry of the wedding and the men’s frantic search for Harry Beaton add lively elements to the production, directed by Dudley Sauve.

Carol Hacker plays keyboard and directs the musical ensemble comprised of Dylan Carson (trumpet), Max Doss (bass), Holly Phelps (clarinet), Gordon Smith (percussion), and H. P. Wilmouth (saxophone).  Kevin Dunn makes a cameo appearance playing a full set of bagpipes in the second half of the show.

Curtain time is 8:00 pm on both Friday and Saturday nights, May 22, 23 and May 29, 30.  Tickets are $15 for adults and $10 for children 12 and under.  Reservations can be made either by calling 434.392.3452 or online at www.waterworksplayers.org.