CANMORE – The Pine Tree Players will be putting on the Ritz with its upcoming presentation of the comedy The New Mel Brooks Musical Young Frankenstein.
Director Maxine Bennett said she has been in love with the play's soundtrack since she first found it in a bargain bin at HMV when she was in high school.
“I’ve been obsessed with it ever since, it’s amazing,” she said. “It’s one of my favourite underrated Broadway (productions) that most people don’t actually know about.”
Bennett said she had been itching to direct a play and proposed bringing Young Frankenstein to Canmore's Pine Tree Players.
The comedy follows the story of Frederick Frankenstein, grandson of the notorious mad scientist Victor Frankenstein. Frederick inherits a family estate in Transylvania and with it sidekick Igor and lab assistant Inga. Together the three set out to create their own unique monster that rivals Victor's.
“It's really funny,” Bennett said. “It’s a super fun evening.”
Artist Candice Perry created unique backdrops for the play, designing 10 set illustrations that are projected onto the stage.
“It was a lot of fun because it allowed me to do scenes that I wouldn’t be doing otherwise,” Perry said.
Her favourite scene to create was Frederick’s laboratory, which she was able to bring to life with skulls and beacons. The illustrations have been animated to add to the exciting feeling of the set.
“The paintings come alive, it’s amazing,” Bennett said.
The play features a cast of more than 20, complemented by a tech team of around 10 and a full orchestra of 12.
“It’s a really big production,” she said with a grin. “How often do you get to see choreographed Broadway plays in Canmore?”
It is the second musical Pine Tree has produced in about a decade, she said.
The group is excited to bring Young Frankenstein to life, Bennett said, because it is a high-energy comedy with incredibly catchy musical numbers. The group has spent four months working to bring the play together so they can share the hilarious Broadway musical with the community.
“A lot of local people have put a lot of work into this,” Bennett said. “We think we’ve made something absolutely fantastic.”
Young Frankenstein runs from Nov. 13-23 at the Miners' Union Hall. Tickets are available for $25. Visit the Pine Tree Players website pinetreeplayers.com for more details.