Virginia Stage Company’s “Fun Home” Makes for a Striking, Melodic, and Fulfilling Journey
- Written by Rebecca Weinstein
- Category: Opening Night with Rebecca Weinstein
- Published: 01 February 2019
Last weekend, Virginia Stage Company opened their production of the musical Fun Home at the Wells Theatre in Downtown Norfolk. Fun Home is based on the best-selling graphic novel by Alison Bechdel, with music by Jeanine Tesori, and a book and lyrics by Lisa Kron. It’s the first Broadway musical with a lesbian protagonist, winning five Tony Awards when it opened on Broadway in 2015, including Best Musical.
Director Jessica Holt has created a cohesive, bold, and talent-packed production of Fun Home. Rapid transitions and unique storytelling move us back and forth through vignettes. Three women play Alison Bechdel at various stages of her life and they all have fantastic and effortless belting singing voices.
We learn early in the play that Alison’s father commits suicide just a few months after she comes out. Craig Waletzko tackles this challenging, pivotal scene with subtlety and a quiet despair that eventually grows frantic and erupts. It’s an intimate, complicated, devastating, and fulfilling story about understanding our histories and striving to become the most authentic versions of ourselves that we can. Virginia Stage Company’s excellent cast not only sings and acts wonderfully, but connects fiercely to the material.
Fun Home plays through February 10 at the Wells Theatre in Downtown Norfolk. Tickets and more information at vastage.org.
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