Floyd Collins at La Mirada Theatre

In January 1925, a boy named Floyd Collins went exploring a small opening in the ground which was known as the “sand cave”.  He was trapped there for several days and a media circus surrounded him.  I won’t spoil the end but know, this true story is gripping.

The stage was small and crafted beautifully.  As audience members entered through the theater wings, we were brought into an intimate area where we were able to watch the story unfold on stage.  Lighting was designed perfectly to portray Floyd crawling through the sand cave.

la-et-cm-theater-review-floyd-collins-at-la-mi-001Floyd played by Mark Whitten was superb.  For most of the show he is stuck in a cave but he was able to pop up and move with agility when he needed to.  His voice was warm and welcoming.  He was funny, charming and you were continually rooting for someone to come rescue him.  His brother Homer played by Jonah Platt was more of a pretty boy.  The duet they sang together at the end of act one was playful and fun.  They had nice onstage chemistry.

Music and lyrics by Adam Guettel weren’t great for me.  It felt as if there were missing puzzle pieces.  The music was lovely but the words just didn’t match them.  The song that opened the second act seemed in the wrong era and from a completely different show.  However, the book by Tina Landau was intriguing which made the show interesting.  I’d prefer the show to be a play with a few songs rather than a complete musical.

All together the cast did a nice job portraying this heart wrenching piece.  Although I was not moved by the music, the girl next to me was sobbing.  That’s what I love about theater; although it may not touch one person, it could pierce another person’s heart.

Rating: That Is The Question

More info here: http://www.lamiradatheatre.com/

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