It’s been awhile since I posted a review up here. And this is a review of a stage play that I feel warrants a review.
Aida is a love story set in Ancient Egypt between an Egyptian Captain, and an Anubian princess taken prisoner in Egypt. While not a very original tale of forbidden love, it’s still a compelling story with two very compelling leads. Radames, the Egyptian Captain dedicated to his cause of leading his country to victory against Egypt’s enemy, Anubia. And the title character, Aida, an Anubian princess taken captive, and must conceal her identity as a princess in order to avoid being killed. Both of the leads have loyalties lying elsewhere, Radames to the Pharoh, and Aida to the other prisoners of Anubia. It’s a very suspenseful love story in the sense that you honestly don’t know how things are going to work out. You end up liking the leads so much that you want a Hollywood ending, but at the same time, based on the circumstances throughout the play, you can’t help but expect a “No Country For Old Men” ending. The two leads aren’t the only two focused character though, you have Amneris, the Pharoh’s daughter who is engaged to Radames. She is an outwardly shallow woman, but she does have some real substance and emotions internally, she truly cares for Radames, and even considers Aida (who is her slave at the time) a friend. You also have Radames’s father, a deceptive, two-faced servant to the Pharoh who is constantly scheming to get into a position of power.
I was initially skeptical of the acting job because it was a high school play, so I knew I wasn’t going to get a Humphrey Bogart performance. I was very pleasantly surprised, however. The acting was very well done, almost all the actors and actresses kept their composure almost flawlessly throughout the play, with a couple of breaks in collectiveness. The musical numbers were very on cue, there were only very few performances when the actors weren’t in near perfect synch with the rest of them. Really good acting on everyone’s part. It’s also worth noting that the great acting and singing were only further accompanied by a very catchy and enjoyable musical score.
Aside from a few historical inaccuracies, I felt that the way the various props used made for a very authentic play. There were times during the play that I actually felt immersed in the story. It’s not that I felt actually apart of it, but there were times where I wasn’t completely sure I was watching a play. Everyone that was apart of the play did a great job at conveying authenticity and historical accuracy. Although something does have to be said about the girl who wore running shoes onstage. Not particularly sure if they had those in Ancient Egypt.
The Bottom Line
Lucas High’s interpretation of Aida was a very rich and fulfilling one. I can’t recommend it to every because, well, they’re only playing it for a limited time, so not everyone could see it. Well done use of the various props and clothing, coupled with the very strong singing and acting ability of the case made for a very enjoyable performance. The story is also worth its money as well. If any adaption of Aida is playing anywhere near you, I say see it. It’ll be worth your while and the few extra bucks.