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Theater Info for Maryland

Children’s Playhouse of Maryland A Year with Frog and Toad

By • Mar 10th, 2012 • Category: Reviews
A Year with Frog and Toad
Children’s Playhouse of Maryland
CCBC-Essex, Baltimore, MD
Through March 18th
200 with one intermission
$10/Discounts Available
Reviewed March 2nd, 2012

A Year With Frog and Toad is a series of vignettes about two animal friends, Frog (Zach Miller) and Toad (Gino Cardoni), as they go through a year of adventures. Frog is optimistic and adventurous; Toad is neither. This makes for tons of comedic fun. For the most part, there is little through storyline, but a few subplots, like Toad’s broken clock and Snail (Josh Schoff) who takes almost the entire year to deliver a letter string the adventures together.

The production and design team has done a very nice job of bringing a cast of children of varying ages together into a quality production that delighted adult and young audience members alike. The set is creative, clean, bright, and interesting with excellent little details. The costumes are adorable. They are regular clothing items with color schemes and just a few touches to turn them into excellent representations of the various animals. The lighting is simple but effective. The music has been well taught, and the kids often sing in nice harmonies. The staging and choreography are cute and creative. The kids have obviously been well-rehearsed and know exactly what to do in every scene and in every scene change. The decision to use a live drum on top of the recorded music gives it the feeling of being live and immediate.

The two young men in the leading roles brought tons of talent and energy to the production. Zach Miller was a great straight man, keeping his performance solid and low-key. Zach also has a strong voice and carried his numbers nicely. Gino Cardoni was delightful as Toad and demonstrated good comedic timing and delivery.

There was also several standouts in the supporting cast. Maddie Ulevich came out of nowhere and was amazing in the scene prior to and the song “Underwater Ballet.” Isabel Gordon and Sheridan Merrick were also extraordinary in joining her in the number. Another delightful song was “Shivers” and Allison Naglieri and Hannah Blau used this as opportunity to show how very talented they are as well. Also, as the tiny little ladybug, Maggie Moloney was just adorable and full of energy. Kudos also to the fantastic ensemble work of all the birds.

In general, all of the young people involved in this production were obviously giving 110% at all times. They were full of energy and excitement, and it paid off and translated into a truly polished production. If you have children…or even if you don’t…this is definitely a production worth making the effort to see sometime in the next two weekends.

Cast

  • Frog: Zach Miller
  • Toad: Gino Cardoni
  • Snail: Josh Schoff
  • Bird/Fish: Zoe Feldman
  • Bird/Mouse: Isabel Gordon
  • Bird: Isabel Ingram
  • Bird: Phillip Merrick
  • Bird/Lizard: Sheridan Merrick
  • Bird/Fish: Rachel Miller
  • Turtle: Maddie Ulevich
  • Young Frog/Fish/Bee: Allison Naglieri
  • Father Frog/Fish/Bee: Mariellen Kemp
  • Mother Frog/Bee: Hannah Blau
  • Large & Terrible Frog/Bee: Anna Snow
  • Ladybug: Maggie Moloney
  • Mole: Kelsey Feeney
  • Mole/Fish: Lillie Jewell
  • Mole/Fish: Ali Radomsky
  • Mole: Megan Van Emdn
  • Mole/Fish: Maia Vong
  • Squirrel: Wesley Brown
  • Squirrel: Hanna Ulevich
  • Squirrel: Emily Wheeler

Production Staff

  • Director: Liz Boyer Hunnicutt
  • Artistic Director: Diane M. Smith
  • Musical Director: Julie Parrish
  • Choreographer: James Hunnicutt
  • Stage Manager: Anne Marie Freeburger
  • Scenic Artist: Laura Miller
  • Costume Designer: Tracy Bird
  • Lighting Programmer: Diane Smith
  • Lighting Operator: Donna Flaharty
  • Spot Operators: Matthew Demetrides, Tiffany Flaharty
  • Percussion: Lisa Wood
  • Sound Operator: Diane Smith
  • Set Construction: Diane Smith
  • Stage Crew: Amanda Ellifritz
  • Dance Captain: Rachel Miller
  • Hair Design: Tiffany Flaharty

Disclaimer: Children’s Playhouse of Maryland provided two complimentary media tickets to ShowBizRadio for this review.

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has been involved in theatre in the state of Maryland and DC for most of her life. She has acted, directed, choreographed, stage managed, and held a million other odd jobs. She has a B.S. in English from Towson University, and is currently pursuing her Master's Degree to become a Reading Specialist. She is a Maryland State Certified English, Theatre, Elementary, and Mathematics Educator. After teaching English and Drama for many years, she now teaches 6th grade Language Arts at Magnolia Middle School in Harford County, Maryland. She wrote the curriculum currently used in Prince George’s County Public Schools for Drama I and Drama II. She now writes and directs plays and musicals for use in church.

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