As the sun set last night, Paramount’s staff and design team for The Little Mermaid gathered to see the final run-through of the work in our Copley Theatre space. I’m telling ya, in the simple magic that is this final adding up of the cast’s progress before moving onto the Paramount stage, I experienced a pure, theatrical story-telling captivating and compelling, dear reader. Deploying, as is typical for this rehearsal process, a modicum of costume pieces, props and rehearsal furniture emphasized the creative energy and striking illusion of actors giving life, animating the inanimate and brilliant puppets of Jesse Mooney-Bullock. Enchanting. And that is due to the superb artistry developed in their design and the astounding talent of the excellent actors operating them. With no lights, special effects, flying, nor sets, this cast had me believing!

Permit me to introduce them to you: first, let’s start with this stellar Ensemble, masters of acting, singing, dancing and puppetry: Aaron Patrick Craven, Ciera Dawn, Gilbert Domally, Megan E. Farley, Allyson Graves, Madison Kauffman, Kayla Kennedy, Eric A. Lewis, Mallory Maedke, Jake Morrissy, Zoe Nadal, Maurice Randle Jr., Rob Riddle, Haley Jane Schafer, Will Skrip, Anthony Sullivan Jr., Charlie Ward and J Tyler Whitmer. Then there’s the double cast role of the little tropical fish “Flounder” played by the young and gifted Murphy Byrne making his Paramount debut and Ricky Falbo, who returns to Paramount having starred as ten-year-old “Tommy” in Tommy and “Gavroche” in Les Misérables. On alternating dates, you will see these brilliant youngsters hold their own like pros. Evil and efficient eels “Flotsam” and “Jetsam”  are Adam Fane and John Adam Keating, the spineless minions of “Ursula.” Christina Hall, who plays the villainess octopus with a vengeance and big voice. The laughs by no means stop there with hilarious George Keating returning as “Chef Louis” and the dutiful “Grimsby,” while Michael Ehlers, lovable as the seagull “Scuttle” can sure spread his wings and…tap dance! Evan Tyrone Martin nobly presides as “King Triton” with great fatherly heart, as Jonathan Butler-Duplessis is simply irresistible as excitable, compassionate crab “Sebastian,” his Court Composer in glorious voice. Among many favorite Paramount actors returning, Devin DeSantis (Tommy‘s “Tommy,” Les Miz’s “Marius” and Hairspray’s “Corny Collins”) is our dashing, romantic “Prince Eric.” Which brings us to lovely, gorgeous voiced Kari Yancy whose “Ariel” is as stubborn as she is a beautiful dreamer.

If you liked Paramount’s Hairspray (and heck, that’s everybody!), you will be very excited to know Director/Choreographer Amber Mak is back at the helm here and is creating a show for which you and your family will create holiday memories to last a lifetime.

Love & thanks,