20 years of Dracula at Actors Theatre!

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Review

Louisville’s favorite vampire is back, and he’s out for blood.  I was thrilled, literally, to see the opening night performanceb2ap3_thumbnail_Dracula-2008-01.jpg of Dracula, this Louisville favorite last Friday night!  I haven't been to Actors Theatre to see Dracula in a very long time so I couldn't wait to see what all the show had in store for me.  Now in it's 20th season, Dracula at Actors Theatre is now the second-longest-running production and the only Dracula to be seen annually at any theatre anywhere. 

I love that Dracula takes place in the smaller, more intimate Bingham theater.  When you first look at the stage, you think, how will they ever put on such a spectacular production in this space.  But, you are quickly immersed in the story and all of your senses are teased as the special effects, lighting, and use of the aisles by the actors bring you in to make you a part of the story! 

This gothic fright-fest, based on the legendary novel by Bram Stoker, has become a Halloween cult classic. Dripping with suspense, Dracula is filled with thrills and chills to keep you on the edge of your seat.  Please note that this show is not for the faint of heart.  Don't get me wrong, I didn't cry like a baby, but there are times where it gets very dark, very loud, and strobe lights or fog are used to help create suspense. 

b2ap3_thumbnail_atl-dracula-L.jpgThis Dramedy is truly a show that keeps you thinking and laughing throughout.  Originally dramatized by Hamilton Deane and John L. Balderston the show is based onBram Stoker's Dracula.  Director by William McNulty, who will some will recognize from playing Scrooge in a Christmas Carol, has created a fast moving show set in Dr. Seward's sanatorium in England.  McNulty both directs and stars as Van Helsing, a character who makes you feel comfortable with the though of being in the same room as vampires because he is so great at making you believe he has all the answers to kill them for good!  In the title role, Dylan Chalfy, is simply charming.  He is great at making the hair on your arms stand up but even more wonderful at his comedic delivery.  Shannon Sullivan's Lucy is quite a woman.  She changes character so quickly between being possessed and being simply a young lady looking to marry the love of her life that you want a happy ending for her!  My favorite character is Renfield, played spectacularly by Marc Bovino.  He is comedy at its best and brings a lightness to what could otherwise be a very grim tale.  Not only does he deliver lines with an accent you would bet he was born with, but his entire body becomes his vessel for delivering laughter to the audience.  I had the luxury of being seated right next to an "off-stage" type of aisle area that he uses for one very particular funny scene with a rat and thought I would was going to have to pull out the box of tissue for how much I was crying from laughing so hard!  The entire cast, though small in numbers, brings something great to this show!  

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The show is really something not to miss!  If you are ready for some Halloween themed fun, book your tickets now as this show always sells out!  Be prepared for blood and gore but know going in that it all adds to the spectacle in a great way! 

See more at: http://actorstheatre.org/shows/fifth-third-banks-dracula-2014-2015

Audience Advisory: Contains strobe light, fog effects and gunshot. Not for the faint of heart.
Age Recommendations: Ages 11+
Student Matinee Grade Levels: 7 – 12

- See more at: http://actorstheatre.org/shows/fifth-third-banks-dracula-2014-2015/#sthash.v2Fv3VUa.dpuf

September 12 - October 31, 2014

Run Time: 2 hours and 15 minutes
There is one 15-minute intermission.