Sunday, August 9, 2015

Review of New American Folk Theatre's The Summer of Daisy Fay in Association with Redtwist Theatre

Once upon a time I went to a show and it was called The Summer of Daisy Fay. It was by Ed Howard based on the novel Daisy Fay and the Miracle Man by Fannie Flagg. It was directed by Anthony Whitaker. It was about this girl named Daisy Fay (Charlie Irving) who was kind of an outsider girl at the beginning, but by the end she had become a beauty pageant girl. It was about how she transformed over time from the awkward girl at the beginning to a very pretty and slightly famous girl at the end. But she was still kind of the same Daisy Fay. I thought that this was a great show, and I thought that the story was very funny and heartbreaking and beautiful.

You are basically having a story told to you by a character, so there is not a lot of physical action on the stage. Sometimes she would kind of act the things that were happening out, but then they still didn't have more than one actor to be in it. But it was not boring; I was very intrigued throughout the entire show because I was so invested in the character. Daisy Fay was a sweet but pretty awkward girl who was going to audition to be Miss Mississippi. And the first act is the more awkward side of her. When she says that she is auditioning to be Miss Mississippi, you are like, "Whoa. How is this going to turn out?" You kind of fall in love with her awkwardness at the beginning, but then in the second act you really get to see what you missed about her before, like how she wasn't actually dumb and how even though the character seemed like a bad actor in the first part, she had become a great comedian in the second. I feel like it is important in a character that you spend so much time with that you get to see them change. The second act is still her, but you are happy about the changes that have happened to her because you see she has helped herself out.

I felt like her entire description of the pageant was very very funny. I thought that her versions of all the girls who were in the pageant were hilarious. I especially loved the Sunbeam girl who was Daisy Fay's least favorite girl that was there. The thing that was funny was that she made her all prissy and princessy. And in the pageant she keeps having trouble with her batons and they keep slipping out of her hands and she can't do anything. It was funny because you felt like she deserved it and the way Daisy Fay showed you how she dropped her batons was very funny too. I liked when Daisy Fay did her comedy routine from the pageant. I thought it was very good and it actually made me laugh. She was pretending to be someone from a newspaper she read growing up and she wondered what it would be like if she had had her own radio show. She did an entire routine about the weddings that were going to happen, but all the weddings were kind of inappropriate. So that made her very awkward and she'd be like, "Ooo-kaaay. So let's move on."

There were also some very heartbreaking parts. Some of them are too much of a giveaway, but one of them was that her friend Pickle had been taken advantage of by her father. That made you feel so sad for Pickle because her reputation and her life had both been ruined. But the thing is you weren't expecting anything bad to happen to a girl called Pickle because when you hear a name like that you think she'll be the comic relief. Pickle is such a cute little name that when you hear it you don't want anything bad to happen to her. And when it does it is so depressing and sad. And also Daisy Fay's mother had died and that was really sad because you see she loved her very much and she had basically held Daisy together because her father was so terrible. It is good to have heartbreaking and funny parts in the same play because then you get a taste of both things and you get the comic relief so you aren't depressed the whole time. And if it had just been funny you wouldn't have gotten to feel any other emotions.

People who would like this show are people who like beauty pageants, bittersweet stories, and slippery batons. I think people should go see this show. It was good because it was very intriguing and I felt like I was there with the character the entire time.

Photos: Jamal Howard

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