'The Star-Spangled Girl' leaves audience starstruck

Neil Simon’s The Star-Spangled Girl is a hilarious romantic comedy that has been making audiences laugh for decades, and Judson Theatre Company’s Pinehurst production of the play is certainly no exception. A cast of professional talent breathes new, fun life into a classic play and upholds the star-spangled standard that’s kept audiences laughing for nearly 60 years.

The Star-Spangled Girl follows the story of Andy Hobart and Norman Cornell, two young men who have dedicated their lives to a struggling magazine called “Fallout” during the social upheaval of 1966 San Francisco. Their lives take a hilarious turn when they meet Sophie Rauschmeyer, a beautiful Olympic swimmer who moves into the apartment next door.

Naturally, hilarity ensues. The three suddenly find themselves in the midst of a laugh-out-loud love triangle that is every bit as funny and frustrating as a good, classic love triangle should be.

Calvin Noble

The play is uniquely done, featuring only three cast members, and is set entirely in a small 1960s San Francisco apartment. The Star-Spangled Girl crafts a compelling narrative that is every bit as comedic as it is dramatic and relies heavily on the actors’ abilities to breathe heart and soul into the characters they portray.

As usual, the lines were delivered with near-flawless comedic timing, leaving the audience laughing out loud from the start. The whole show is rife with comic conflict, slapstick, and jabs, japes, and jokes alike.

This is not to understate the heartfelt moments, romantic themes, and at times intense confrontation; rather, the show provides a good balance of conflict and clownery. Things particularly heat up in the second act.

“We’ve got a youthful and energetic cast, and The Star-Spangled Girl promises to be a great evening at the theatre that is not to be missed,” enthuses JTC Executive Producer Morgan Sills. “This production is sure to be a crowd-pleaser.”

Now in its 10th season, Judson Theatre Company is the recipient of the North Carolina Theatre Conference (NCTC) George A. Parides Professional Theatre Award for excellence in professional theatre and multiple Broadway World Raleigh Awards. The audience may recognize two out of three main cast members, Nicholas Talbot and Calvin Noble, from the company’s recent production of Agatha Christie’s The Mousetrap late last year.  

Judson Theatre Company in Pinehurst is bringing this comedic gem to life for five performances only, from April 27-30 at Bradshaw Performing Arts Center’s Owens Auditorium.

To purchase tickets to The Star-Spangled Girl or request additional information, please visit http://judsontheatre.com/. Discounted group rates (10+), student and military tickets are available. Bradshaw Performing Arts Center is located at 3395 Airport Road, Pinehurst.

Feature photo: Nicholas Talbot and Mari Blake. Both pictures provided by David Sinclair Photography. 

~Written by Sandhills Sentinel Reporter Abegail Murphy.

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