Goethe masterpiece supplies theme of 2 local productions 'Little Shop of Horrors' and 'Damn Yankees' are Faustian delights

March 26, 1998|By Phil Greenfield | Phil Greenfield,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

Could anyone have imagined that when Goethe, the German poet and playwright, wrote his masterpiece, "Faust," it would be dominating the Anne Arundel theater scene nearly two centuries later?

It's true. Wherever you look during the coming weeks, you'll see a man selling his soul to the devil to achieve his heart's desire.

Featured at the Chesapeake Music Hall is "Damn Yankees," the delightful musical about the die-hard Washington Senators fan whose hatred of pinstripes compels him to swap his soul for a pennant race his beloved Senators can win.

Mr. Applegate, as this Mephistopheles is called, transforms paunchy old Joe Boyd into Joe Hardy, the second coming of Babe Ruth, whose exploits assure that Washington no longer will be first in war, first in peace and last in the American League.

The wonderful score includes "You Gotta Have Heart," Applegate's hilarious "Those Were the Good Old Days" and the classic "Whatever Lola Wants," sung by the temptress assigned to keep Joe from thinking too much about the wife he left behind.

"Damn Yankees" plays at the Chesapeake Music Hall through June 7. Call 410-626-7515 for reservations.

At the Pascal Center this weekend and next, Faust moves from baseball to botany as the Pasadena Theatre Company presents the popular perennial "Little Shop of Horrors."

This fiendishly clever Alan Menken-Howard Ashman musical tells the story of nebbish florist Seymour Krellborn, who flirts with homicide to feed the man-eating plant that can win him the girl he loves.

Gary Yealdhall, Lauran Taylor and Anthony Anzalone star in this production. And, oh, yes, singing the role of the Faustian plant will be none other than yours truly, Phil Greenfield, who has every intention of becoming our area's premier botanical baritone.

"Little Shop" plays at the Pascal Center Friday and Saturday evenings and Sunday afternoons through April 5. The production moves north to the Chesapeake Center for the Creative Arts (formerly Brooklyn Park High School) from April 17 through 26.

Call 410-360-4431 or 410-969-1801 for show times and reservations.

And if you don't like musicals, stay home and watch "The Little Mermaid" or listen to Mahler's 8th Symphony. You guessed it. They're also right out of "Faust."

Pub Date: 3/26/98

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