Village Theatre’s Aida is a must see for everyone

W ow, that girl can sing.

  • Friday, May 23, 2008 12:00am
  • Life
Marliss Amiea as Aida.

Marliss Amiea as Aida.

W ow, that girl can sing.

That was by far and away the biggest impression I had after seeing Thursday night’s performance of “Aida.”

Marliss Amiea’s performace as the Nubian-princess-turned-slave, Aida, was phenomenal.

I quite literally got goose bumps when she sang. The holy-cow-the-fact-that-a-voice-can-have-that-kind-of-power-and-range-is-amazing, shivers-down-the-spine kind of goosebumps.

I almost felt bad for her co-star Michael Murnoch who played Radames. Although he was talented, this night was the ladies’ turn to shine.

That’s right, ladies plural, because Ryah Nixon was also a joy to watch. I will admit, I remember her more for her comedic timing than her voice, although I do remember it being quite excellent.

It was her ditzy portrayal as the self-absorbed Princess Amneris that really stood out.

I cracked up during her first meeting with Aida as well as her attempt to lure Radames into her bedroom.

I had never seen a production of Aida before, so I really didn’t know what to expect — although a rock and roll musical was definitely not one of my guesses.

I happen to be in the minority of people who love musicals (at least among my group of friends) and I love it when they push the norm a bit, (Moulin Rouge is my favorite movie ever) so Aida really worked for me. I should have expected that it would since the musical was written by Elton John and Tim Rice.

The only thing that didn’t really work for me were the costumes. Aida’s dresses were lovely as were the rest of the Nubian wardrobe. I even liked the Marilyn Monroe-take on Egyptian garb worn by Princess Amneris and her handmaidens. But Radames and his fellow soldiers/back-up dancers’ costumes looked like G.I. Joe dressed in bondage. And Radames’ jacket looked a bit too much like something Michael Jackson would wear. Although I understand they were meant to be edgy, it just ended up being distracting.

Costumes aside, the production was amazing. The sets were gorgeous and the scene changes were some of the best I have seen.

I honestly got caught up in the show and will admit that the tears were flowing by the end. Granted, I cry easily in movies and books — I even once teared up during a commercial —but still, Aida was full of genuine, riveting emotion.

Aida is one that you can take the family to, and everyone will enjoy it. Seriously! I even took a friend who hates musicals, and as soon as it was over she called her husband to rave about it.

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