Section: Arts

Raunchy and ridiculous, Prince Chucky wows the crowd

Raunchy and ridiculous, Prince Chucky wows the crowd

Anna Dunlavey, Collegian

By Rebecca Frank

The Kenyon College Dance and Dramatic Club (KCDC) kept its audiences thoroughly amused throughout Family Weekend with its first mainstage production of the year, The Ballad of Bonnie Prince Chucky.  The show, written and directed by Playwright-in-Residence and Professor of Drama Wendy MacLeod, is a comedic tale of students at a Scottish boarding school. When the newly crowned captain of the rugby team, Charlie 1 (Max Pescherine ’17), decrees that he is king and that no one else may have the name Charlie, Charlie 2 (Henry Nash ’17) becomes determined to get his name back and overthrow the regime, causing hilarious chaos and shenanigans.

Each actor embodied his character with poise and a commitment to the ridiculous. Pescherine conveyed his character’s full-of-it attitude soundly and his attention to the details of his character’s little quirks was commendable, especially his character’s devotion to constantly sanitizing his hands. Serena Glynn ’16 (Fiona, Charlie 2’s girlfriend) and Nash played well off of each other and made their characters’ awkward high school relationship believable by way of their gawky physicality toward one another.

Another noteworthy performance was that of Alex Kirshy ’17 as Angus. His portrayal of the over-the-top sidekick to King Charlie was hysterical. His acting and facial expressions were spot on for his daft character, and his energy was endless. His comedic timing was also commendable, especially in the scene in which he tries to get Charlie 2 to sing drunken rugby songs with him.

The dialogue between Julia Greer ’15 as Mavis and Sarah White ’16 as Libby flowed seamlessly. White portrayed the “fierce” lady-in-waiting to Queen Mavis, and her fearless attitude and dedication to the role earned her many laughs. Greer’s Mavis was also humorous, and she portrayed the spoiled girlfriend of King Charlie with nuance that clearly showed her character’s power. For example, in the scene where Fiona is sent to ask Mavis a favor, Greer’s slight change in vocal tone when she asked Fiona to give up her earrings illustrated just how manipulative her character could be.

The attention to detail in the set pieces, designed by Associate Professor of Drama Andrew Reinert, was meticulous, from Mavis’s bright pink bed to reflect her over-the-top and girly character to Charlie 1’s throne — a decked-out laundry cart — that illustrated how ludicrous his ruling of the school was. The props and costumes were well detailed, such as Mavis’s comical Burger King crown and the Scottish sashes all of Charlie’s followers wore.    

The entire cast should be admired for their strong commitment to their ridiculous characters and their nonstop energy in their roles. Each scene was well executed with actors making use of not just the entire stage but also the area in front of it; they often jumped on a small trampoline built into the stage. From the drunken rugby songs to the bagpipe-playing to the impressive fencing choreography — designed by professional fight choreographer Tyler Rich, who came to teach the actors for a weekend in September — to the dance party that concluded the show, the cast of The Ballad of Bonnie Prince Chucky invited its audience to embrace the ridiculous and simply enjoy an evening of comic theater.

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