"Young Frankenstein" Opens Friday at Cincinnati Music Theatre
Fri, 11/07/2014 - 09:04 RCN Newsdesk
There will be no wardrobe malfunctions on stage, promises Jeff Richardson. He’s playing hunchback Igor in manic musical comedy Young Frankenstein at the Aronoff Center’s Jarson-Kaplan Theater, opening Friday and continuing through Nov 15.
Igor’s hump, which has a tendency to moves mysteriously from side to side as he trundles after the mad doctor, won’t be falling of his back. Then again, “Maybe a little GQ ‘hump’-reveal photo shot would sent ticket sales over the top!”
Young Frankenstein is, of course, based on Mel Brooks’ nutsy hit movie. The song-and-dance re-imagining of the Frankenstein legend follows bright young Dr. Frankenstein (that’s ‘FRONK-en-STEEN’) as he attempts to create a monster – but not without wacky complications.
Along with the Transylvanian castle, the Doc inherits his grandfather’s laboratory, Igor and deeply strange housekeeper Frau Blucher.
What’s a doctor to do? The Doc makes the right choice -- carry on his grandfather’s mad experiments reanimating the dead with the help, Igor and leggy lab assistant Inga.
Florence resident Richardson loves physical comedy – his pantheon of roles includes Max Bialystock in The Producers, Patsy in Spamalot (who hauls a backpack and gave Richardson plenty of practice for Igor) and Wilbur Turnblat in Hairspray.
Igor was the only role he tried out for and some friends actually checked to make sure Richardson had an audition time set.
Richardson laughs that Igor is the show’s “king-maker.” The mad doctor couldn’t ask for a better wingman – “Igor is an easy-going free spirit,” Richardson analyzes. “Maybe a little George Carlin-esque.
He Takes life as it comes and handles what needs to be handled. "He’s passionate about his one true goal – to follow in the steps of his grandfather. And then take it further.”
What’s next for Richardson? You’ll be able to find him at Showbiz Players’ The Addams Family auditions next month. It plays at The Carnegie in spring. “I’m hesitant to say only to avoid jinxing myself,” Richardson ventures, “but I would be honored to get the role of Gomez in The Addams Family musical. The comedy, the passion –the Tango. Who could ask for more, mon amie?”
Want to get in on the “Young Frankenstein” act? There will be an audience participation performance (think Rocky Horror) at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 12. Be ready to sing, dance in your seat (are you ready for “Puttin’ on the Ritz”?), shout iconic lines, and dress up as your favorite character.
Young Frankenstein, 7:30 p.m. Wednesday-Saturday, 2 p.m. Sunday through Nov. 15, Jarson-Kaplan Theater, Aronoff Center for the Arts, 650 Walnut St., Downtown Cincinnati. Tickets $24 adults, $20 students/senior/military. 513-621-2787 and www.CincinnatiMusicTheatre.org or www.CincinnatiArts.org.
Written by Jackie Demaline, RCN Arts