FUNNY, FABULOUS, AND FANTASTIC – DO NOT MISS GLOUCESTER STAGE “THE 39 STEPS!”

At Gloucester Stage, “The 39 Steps” Amazes and Astounds

By Tom Hauck

In this era of computer generated film “performances” that create an artificial reality of human capabilities, it’s a daunting task indeed for a regional stage company, in a production with only four actors, to startle an audience and leave them breathless. Yet this is what “The 39 Steps,” expertly directed by Robert Walsh, now through July 28 at The Gloucester Stage Company, does handily.

It begins with the fast-paced script, adapted by Patrick Barlow from the 1915 novel by John Buchan. The play premiered in 1995 and ran for nine years in London’s West End. It’s a laugh-out-loud parody of the 1935 Alfred Hitchcock thriller, and lest you think that this makes it somehow less artistic, you’d be mistaken. This physical comedy relies on the precise split-second timing of the four actors, who tangle in a string of set pieces that strive to top each other for outrageous choreography. The gags, relentless and perfectly executed, compel you to watch closely so that you won’t miss a single nuance.

The cast is superb. Stage veterans Amanda Collins, Gabriel Kuttner, Paul Melendy, and Lewis D. Wheeler are a well-oiled comic machine. Wheeler plays Richard Hannay, a man caught up in a mysterious espionage kerfuffle, while Collins, Kuttner, and Melendy trade off multiple roles as if it were as easy as trading hats—which is what they literally do! The stage performers are ably assisted by Malachi Rosen, who from his onstage office provides a steady stream of sound effects, and to whom the actors occasionally direct their complaints (in this show, no wall is left unbroken!).

When celebrating such an outstanding ensemble cast, the reviewer is rightly reluctant to shine a spotlight on any individual performer, for fear that by doing so the brilliance of the other three might appear to be dimmed. Yet I would be remiss if I failed to give special notice to the mind-blowing physical and vocal skills of Paul Melendy. There is no Walt Disney cartoon character or SNL cast member who can prepare you for the astonishing, barely human shrieks and sneers that issue from this actor’s mouth. When midway into the show he appears as Professor Jordan, the energy of the production, already high, goes through the roof.

Whether you’re a denizen of the theater or you haven’t bought a ticket in years, this production will amaze you. It will bring you to a place you might think has vanished forever—a place where real humans create marvelous magic, right in front of your eyes.

“The 39 Steps” is playing now through July 28 at The Gloucester Stage Company. For tickets, call 978-281-4099, or go to gloucesterstage.com.

Snapshots from The 39 Steps Cast Podcast

GloucesterCast 345 with Warren Waugh, Cidalia Schwatrz, Cast Of The 39 Steps, Chris McCarthy, Nichole Schrafft, Kim Smith, and Joey Ciaramitaro Taped 7/14/19

GloucesterCast 345 with Warren Waugh, Cidalia Schwatrz, Cast Of The 39 Steps, Chris McCarthy, Nichole Schrafft, Kim Smith, and Joey Ciaramitaro Taped 7/14/19

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Topics Include:
Glorious Weekend
Pat Dalpiaz’ GMG  Local Oyster Specials Chart Is Live- Let us know if we’re missing anything
Bluefin Blowout Coming Up! July 25-27th www.bluefinblowout.com
39 Steps At Gloucester Stage- http://gloucesterstage.com/39steps/ 
Cast: AMANDA COLLINS, LEWIS D. WHEELER, PAUL MELENDY, GABRIEL KUTTNERWith Bob Walsh, Malachi Rosen and Heidi Dallin
Not-so-secret secret spot which we won’t reveal
Finally Got On Board The P/V Numnum (party vessel) and it was glorious
Split AC Units- Who installs AC, then layers winter pajamas and hoodies and then turns the AC down even more and runs the AC when it’s 60 degrees outside and turns on the bathroom heater while the AC is running?
Yella

 

SANPSHOTS FROM SUPER FUN PODCAST WITH “THE 39 STEPS” DIRECTOR BOB WALSH AND CAST AMANDA COLLINS, ‘NAKED GUY’ PAUL MELENDY, LEWIS WHEELER, GABRIEL KUTTNER, CHRISTOPHER WALKEN, AND RAYMOND BABBITT

Don’t miss The 39 Steps, a thriller/love story/comedic stage adaption of Alfred Hitchckock’s thriller of the same name, now playing at the Gloucester Stage Company. Directed by Bob Walsh and starring Amanda Collins, Lewis D. Wheeler, Paul Melendy, and Gabriel Kuttner, with foley artist Malachi Rosen.

Check out our podcast with this supremely talented and hysterical cast, airing tonight at 8pm. 

Purchase tickets HERE

 

LINK TO GLOUCESTER STAGE “CYRANO” CAST ON WGBH OPEN STUDIO WITH JARED BOWEN

“Cyrano” On Open Studio with Jared Bowen WGBH-TV: Guests Bob Walsh and Jeremiah Kissel

The episode premiered on Friday July 20 @8:30 pm and re-aired throughout the weekend on two PBS stations

In case you missed the airings on network tv, the show is available online now. Watch the entire show!  There is another scene from Cyrano during the closing credits of the show!

Link to the show is below

Enjoy!!!

Heidi

https://www.wgbh.org/program/open-studio-with-jared-bowen/casanova-at-the-mfa-cyrano-at-gloucester-stage-more

GloucesterCast 289 With  Susan Lipsett, Paul Melendy, Erin Nicole Washington, Heidi Dallin, Bob Walsh,  Kim Smith and Joey Ciaramitaro Taped 7/22/18

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GloucesterCast 289 With  Susan Lipsett, Paul Melendy, Erin Nicole Washington, Heidi Dallin, Bob Walsh,  Kim Smith and Joey Ciaramitaro Taped 7/22/18

 

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Topics Include:

Free Tickets To Cape Ann Community Cinema – Share this post on Facebook for a chance to win two free tickets to Cape Ann Community Cinema, The Cinema Listings are always stickied in the GMG Calendar at the top of the blog or you can click here to go directly to the website

Chocolate frosted donuts from Susan Casey Lipsett

Almost Losing The Domain http://www.goodmorninggloucester.com

GET YOUR TICKETS NOW FOR THE SCHOONER LANNON CIGAR AND BOURBON SAIL

DON’T MISS THE 31ST ANNUAL CAPE ANN CHAMBER AUCTION, BETTER THAN EVERY!!!

If you enjoy grilling join our Facebook group The Gloucester BBQ Delegation  We have 140 Members Currently

Nespresso Vertuo Evoluo Coffee and Espresso Machine

Cyrano At Gloucester Stage Buy Tickets Here

Bonne Bouch

Gloucester Stage Gala

Using Quality Chocolate When Baking

Ocean View Inn Was Sold

Bluefin Blowout Is In Two Weeks

Battle Of Gloucester Reenactment

Last Stop Variety is For Sale

Gloucester Times Police Blotter -“Man Accused Of Using Can Of Spaghetti As Weapon Of Destruction

Monarch Sightings

Happy Birthday Liv

Feed your planters Neptune’s Harvest

42 Pairs Of Plovers Nesting at Cranes Beach

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GloucesterCast 227 With The Cast, Writer and Director Of Bank Job, Heidi Dallin, Karen Pischke, Kim Smith and Joey Ciaramitaro Taped 6/4/17

GloucesterCast 227 With The Cast, Writer and Director Of Bank Job, Heidi Dallin, Karen Pischke, Kim Smith and Joey Ciaramitaro Taped 6/4/17

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Topics Include:

Chamber Announces Cape Ann Small Business Persons of the Year  Greg Bover Our Guy!  Reception for Greg Wednesday June 7th 5-7 PM at The Studio Restaurant
Gloucester Love Fest Monday Monday June 5th At the Gloucester Writer’s Center For More Info
Cape Ann Eats Roundup-
Congratulations To Dennis and Doug Silva At The Topside Grill Who Won The Liquor License
The Studio and Rudder Have Been Running Half Off Specials Nearly Every Day
Wicked Tuna Season Finale Tonight June 4th at 9PM On Nat Geo

“Bank Job” at Gloucester Stage Features High-Energy Comic Performances

By Tom Hauck

In its New England Premiere through June 10 at the Gloucester Stage Company, Bank Job delivers superb comic performances by a quintet of actors who literally throw themselves into their roles. The setup is simple: After pulling off their heist, two bumbling bank robbers (Paul Melendy and Nael Nacer) flee to the bank’s executive washroom, where they intend to escape out the window to freedom. Their plan is complicated by a woman who happens to be using one of the stalls (Shuyi Jia, a GSC newcomer), an investigating cop (Johnny Lee Davenport), and finally a bystander (Richard McElvain).

It’s a ninety-minute cavalcade of broad-brush comic acting, with the ensemble wringing every outlandish emotion and possibility for disaster from the script by playwright John Kolvenbach. There are a few introspective moments; a welcome respite from the nonstop wackiness is ably delivered by Johnny Lee Davenport as he soberly reflects on his failed marriages and lost dreams.

Directed by Robert Walsh, Bank Job features an evocative set design by Jon Savage. The upscale wood paneling and muted lighting are enhanced by real washroom fixtures provided by Frank Webb’s Bath Center. Within this cloistered arena these five outstanding actors are able to cut loose and flex their comic skills. For tickets, call 978-281-4433, or visit http://www.gloucesterstage.com.From left: Johnny Lee Davenport, Nael Nacer, Paul Melendy, and Shuyi Jia

Photo: Gary Ng