I didn’t realize that Greek mythology could be so funny until I saw “The Gods of Comedy” at the Okoboji Summer Theatre this week.
To me all that Greek mumbo jumbo seemed boring and dry. I was so wrong!
Director Stephen Brotebeck took a cast of six students and one master of fine arts candidate and created such hilarity through interpretation of clever dialogue, body language, dance and facial expression. They were all very good in their respective roles.
I think student costume designer Briann Johnson has a bright future ahead of her. The costumes were perfect for the scenes and time frame. She cleverly worked pieces of University of Okoboji clothing into the attire of the comedy gods as well.
Gretchen Ugalde came in from Chicago, Illinois, to design the set for this adventure in make-believe. The set was well done. The lighting designed by Roe Woolf was good too.
The two mythological “Gods of Comedy,” aka Dionysus and Thalia, were absolutely hilarious. Kyle Montgomery literally stole the show as the male half of the dynamic duo. His facial expressions and choreographic skills (that is using the term loosely) were so funny! His female counterpart was portrayed by Allison Belsan. She has such firm stage presence and delivers her lines with incredible timing.
Kudos to Lauren Peck as Daphne. She is such a good actress and projects so well. She is also quite athletic. Brotebeck had her running, tumbling and dancing all over that stage; much to our amusement.
Riley McGregor played Dean Trickett very well. There were times that we in the back could not hear her but for the most part she was a joy to watch.
The role of Ralph was admirably played by Tyler Okunski. He was amusing to watch and used exactly the right amount of naivety and starchiness to be totally believable. Good job, Tyler!
Garrett Weir had the unenviable task of playing three characters: Aristide, Aleksi and Ares. He gave each role enough definition that most of the time you did not know it was the same person doing each scene. When you can pull off playing a janitor and a Greek god all in the same night, you have accomplished something.
Savannah Portillo-Weiss had a duel role — Zoe and Brooklyn. She did a very commendable job in both instances (when we could hear her in the back of the theatre).
The entire cast was so good, including their accents, that the evening seemed to fly by.
We in the opening night audience had to stay sharp to follow the sometimes complicated storyline, but it was so funny that we kept right in there. I am sure that when I close my eyes, I will always see Montgomery trying to dance in that toga. It is not a sight soon to be forgotten.
Thank you to OST, the cast and crew of “The Gods of Comedy” for making a really dry subject so very funny. The play will run through Sunday night.