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‘Trailer Park’ offers memorable moments

Tue., April 1, 2014

Lake City Playhouse’s production of “The Great American Trailer Park Musical” contains some stock characters with big personalities. From the exotic dancer to the wayward husband to the inmate’s wife, the cast plays them all with much vigor.

With music and lyrics by David Nehls and book by Betsy Kelso, “Trailer Park” is upbeat and contemporary, poking fun at pop culture and the poor people who inhabit Armadillo Acres. This show may never be a classic like “The Sound of Music” or have the depth of “Rent,” but it is entertaining, although not for children.

The story centers on Jeannie (Alyssa Jordan), a woman who has had agoraphobia since her baby was kidnapped 20 years earlier. Watching her try to overcome her fear throughout the show is interesting. Frustrated with his life, her husband (Mark Pleasant) turns to the affections of exotic dancer Pippi (Hannah Farley). Add Pippi’s violent and jealous boyfriend, Duke (Eric McGaughey), to the mix and comedy ensues.

A trio of narrators propel the story: Betty (Din Golden), Lin (Charisa Bareither), and Pickles (Aubree Peterson). Although their characters are vastly different, their voices blend well.

Some of the singers have stronger vocal skill than others, but there are memorable moments. Farley, Jordan and Pleasant make a sweet-sounding trio in “But He’s Mine/It’s Never Easy.” Bareither’s deep voice suits the rock music she performs.

The ensemble number “Storm’s A-Brewin’ ” is campy and entertaining. The scene is well choreographed by Brook Bassett and features fun costumes. Pleasant is hilarious in his Rod Stewart-esque blond wig.

Peterson’s spunky Pickles bounces around the stage. Her scene as a girl who works at a flan eatery is hilarious and includes amusing interplay with Duke.

The set, designed by George Green, consists of colorful mobile home facades that create a vibrant world and demonstrate a crafty use of the space. The lighting effects and variety of wigs augment the comedy in the show, directed by Andy Renfrew.

While these characters may be caricatures of people we have met at the trailer park down the road, like us, they dream of something better.

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