In July, Professor Butchy’s and Dean Loffert’s Introduction to Theater classes attended the Broadway musical Come From Away. Student April Hernandez (far right) reviews the production below!
Come from Away was an interesting play that brings people together. It includes love, misunderstanding, and a lot of laughter. Jenn Colella (who played Beverley), Alex Finke (Janice), Geno Carr (Oz), De’lon Grant (Bob), Joel Hatch (Claude), Astrid Van Wieren (Beulah), and other characters came out and performed “Welcome to the Rock,” and the performance began.
The play describes what was happening after 9/11 in Gander, a small town in Canada. On September 11, 2001, some planes that were near Canada were forced to land in Gander. Everyone was banned from entering the United States.
There was a passenger character whose name was Ali (played by Caesar Samayoa) who was a Muslim being interrogated by everyone around him. He did not have luggage with him, he wore a turban, and he had an accent. Everyone started to think he was a terrorist. Chad Kimball (who played Kevin T.) and Caesar Samayoa (who played Kevin J.) were a gay couple. Their journey there was a little rocky due to having opposite reactions from one another. Kevin J. was a little more open to exploring Canada while Kevin T. wanted to just lay low and stay in. Beverley, the plane’s captain, had been told she couldn’t be a pilot because she was woman and had fought her way to the top, proving everyone wrong.
Caesar Samayoa did a great job in his performance. His singing was great, and I felt what the character was feeling. Another performer I liked was Joel Hatch, whose narrating skills were amazing. When he would perform, he worked the stage and used all the props, which made the performance entertaining. Astrid Van Wieren also had a great performance. She was loud and improved the performance using jokes and an outspoken personality trait. Her acting provided a different energy that made the play more interesting.
Having the play as a musical allowed the audience not to become so tense and kept a light mood even though the story was emotional. The acting, stage lighting, and use of chairs to change scenes were a good way to tell the different settings. Daniel Goldstein, the director of Come from Away, did an amazing job. The way that Goldstein cast the play and had the cast perform had the audience captivated.
In conclusion, the play was worth the watch. The message is no matter how rough times are, there is always a way to bring happiness, including not judging someone for their appearance. I recommend everyone to watch this play because it brings people together and teaches people about humanity. Go watch the show, and you would not be disappointed!