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Fun Home is a Brilliant Opener of Davidson Community Player’s 2024 Season

by | Mar 6, 2024

The opening play of the Davidson Community Players (DCP) season has always been one of my favorite productions—the theme

(Sydney Schertz photo)

has something you can sink your teeth into. This year they didn’t fail. Fun Home, based on the Graphic Novel by Alison Bechdel is amazing!

DCP does justice to the award-winning tragicomedy with music by Jeanine Tesori and book and lyrics by Lisa Kron, which premiered on Broadway in 2015, followed by a successful run in Charlotte in 2019. Fun Home delivers a strong message cleverly portrayed by a talented cast on a beautifully designed stage at the Armour Street Theatre, under the brilliant direction of Danielle Melendez.

(Sydney Schertz photo)

The story develops around an everyday family—mother, father, and three children. Their historic abode is also a funeral home. Bruce, the dad, portrayed by the talented Ashby Blakely, is a closeted homosexual who entices males of varying ages. Roy is one of them, portrayed by Bart Copeland, who also plays Mark, Pete, and Bobby Jeremy.

Bruce’s stalwart wife Helen is performed by Allison Rhinehardt, a compelling, graceful actress familiar to Lake Norman audiences. Her delivery is powerful and her talent shines!

The couple’s two young sons also have been seen on area stages—Grayson Flowers who plays Christian and young John, played by the lithe Aiden Honeycutt, who charmed audiences last year as the piglet Wilbur in Charlotte’s Web.

Alison, the daughter, is portrayed by three actors, depicting three stages of the girl’s life. As the grown-up graphic designer Alison, Kel Wright leads Fun Home’s storyline, unravelling the development of her life in words and tune. Small Alison, the child, is portrayed by Bailey Fischer. It’s Ann Schnabel as Medium Alison who reveals she’s a lesbian, something she affirms after she leaves home.

(Sydney Schertz photo)

“When you go away to college people you meet are not as smart as you thought they might be,” Bruce writes to his daughter. Or who they really are! Alison meets Joan, a staff counselor played by Sierra Key, a fellow lesbian with whom Alison falls in love.

“I’m changing my major to Joan,” Medium Alison enthusiastically declares, singing “Changing my Major” with glee.

Fun Home is one of the best productions I’ve seen on the Armour Street stage. Chip Decker’s scenic design, with lighting by Mazie Aubin and Kathryn Harding’s sound managed by Carie Cranford, are outstanding!

I love a thrust stage—it reaches out to the audience inviting them to share intimate emotions. Fun Home’s colorful version is brilliantly inviting. Danielle Melendez’s direction is superb.

Bravo, Davidson Community Players! Love to see some more realistic plays.

Connie Fisher

Connie Fisher, neé Consuelo Carmona, is a Davidson resident who grew up in Mexico City where she became a journalist and acquired a taste for the theatre. Her preference for work behind the scenes led to an interest in writing reviews—Yale Rep among her favorite troupes. Connie is the author of Doing it the Right Way, the biography of an Italian hatmaker. Her prose appears with 87 other international writers in The Widows’ Handbook. An active, founding member of Lake Norman Writers, Connie just released her latest book, "The Mongrel, Bi-cultural Adventures of a Latina-Scandinavian Youth," a memoir about her years growing up in Mexico.​

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