The Student News Site of Gannon University since 1947


The Student News Site of Gannon University since 1947


The Student News Site of Gannon University since 1947


‘Shrek’ keeps box office busy

The Erie Playhouse’s production of “Shrek: The Musical” presents a family-friendly environment without being too childish; it’s guaranteed to make audiences of all ages laugh out loud.

“Shrek: The Musical,” based on the movie, tells the story of Shrek, an ogre who is thrown for a loop when fairytale creatures are displaced onto his land.

He ventures to Duloc to get Lord Farquaad to remove the creatures and finds that he must rescue Princess Fiona from a dragon-guarded castle and bring her back to Duloc in order to get the deed to his swamp.

On his journey he meets up with a donkey – named Donkey – who turns into his travel companion and co-conspirator in rescuing Fiona.

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Though the story basically follows the movie’s outline, the musical script adds some elements such as characters, background stories and, of course, songs.

The playhouses’s rendition of the musical features Casey Conrad-Medvis as Shrek, Kate Amatuzzo as Princess Fiona, Patrick Thiem as Lord Farquaad and Josh Lapping as Donkey.

The season openers at the Erie Playhouse usually leave audiences in love with the performance and this show is certainly no exception.

The cast, musicians and technical crew have pulled together to create a fantastic way to start the season.

Amatuzzo, known for her show-stopping vocals, does not disappoint, hitting notes high enough to blow up a blue bird – side note, the first three rows signify what many would like to call “the splash zone.”

Fiona quickly jumps from lady-like princess into her more ogre-like tendencies and Amatuzzo makes the switch easily.

Conrad plays the most relatable ogre you will ever meet.

Many people know what it’s like to be shut out from people or have a fear of rejection – we’ve all been through high school – and Conrad’s rendition of Shrek makes it easy to empathize with green, swamp-dwelling creature.

Though most of the time he shows aggravation at the world and Donkey’s antics, he also displays a softer side when talking about his past, wanting to be a hero and his feelings for Fiona.

Lapping, with his Erie Playhouse Mainstage debut, flawlessly portrays Donkey. That kind of role requires constant energy and Lapping never missed a beat.

Another memorable performance is Gingy – the Gingerbread Man – played by Nicole Rosenbager who hilariously screeched out classic lines like “Not the gumdrop buttons!” and “Do You Know the Muffin Man.”

However, Thiem steals the show as Lord Farquaad. His interactions with the audience and his physicality while acting on his knees along with his demeanor overall will leave the audience busting a gut throughout the entire scene.

The entire cast shines throughout this entire performance. Songs stay in tune, dance numbers keep in sync and lines are delivered with impeccable comedic timing.

If I could watch this show every night, I might.

Students, faculty and anyone in the Erie community should definitely make an effort to go see “Shrek: The Musical.”

If you’re looking for a family-friendly comedy that won’t make you feel like a two-year-old the entire time, look no further.

“Shrek: The Musical” runs Sept. 25-28 and Oct. 1-5. Shows start at 7:30 p.m. Wednesdays – Saturdays and 2 p.m. Sundays. Student tickets are $13.50 and regular admission is $22. An additional matinee performance has been added Oct. 4 at 2 p.m. Purchase tickets by calling the Erie Playhouse box office at (814) 454-2852.



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