BY GEORGE J. DACRE
John Ade as Dr. Henry Jekyll and Neil Battinelli as Mr. Hyde lead a cast of very talented actors in this classic written many years ago by Robert Louis Stevenson. The result is a first rate production.
Jekyll, who wrestles with his desire to look into the good and bad sides of humanity, devises a magic potion that results in the creation of his alter ego, the evil Hyde who preys on prostitutes and becomes enamored of the beauteous Elizabeth (played by Dana Duff), who believe it or not, fears Hyde but also loves him.
With astute direction by Debra Lee Failla, the Elmwood Players manage to create the illusion of many sets from a London Street, to Dr. Jekyll’s study and laboratory, to Hyde’s Room, the Charing Cross Hotel, Regents Park and more. And using four actors in the Hyde part, dominated by Battinelli, who with expressions creates the demonic character of Hyde.
Ade is just great in his performance of the tormented Dr. Jekyll and Battinelli is great in his Hyde performance. The dialogue is very intriguing and the audience is left with little doubt as to what is transpiring with the scenes of bodies being brought in bloodied by Hyde. The ending is very dramatic and is the culmination of this epic struggle by one man to go where no man or human has gone before. Meg Sewell, Scott Nangle and Victor Gallo give oustanding supportive performances in the cast.
This is a classy production and I rate Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde Four Out Of Four Stars. Catch it at Elmwood Playhouse, Park Street in Nyack weekends through February 11.
Call 845-533-1313 or elmwoodplayhouse.com.