‘Carrie’ comes to the CroswellWritten by Matt Liasse | | firstname.lastname@example.org
The idea for Stephen King’s “Carrie” came from an article in Life detailing telekinetic phenomena, the ability to move objects by thinking about them.
“There was some evidence to suggest that young people might have such powers … especially girls in early adolescence,” King wrote in “On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft.”
King’s telling of Carrie White deals with telekinetic talent, bullying and religion. It has been adapted into two movies, once in 1976 with Sissy Spacek and Piper Laurie and again in 2013 with Chloë Grace Moretz and Julianne Moore.
Now, the franchise has been adapted into a musical, which will be performed at the The Croswell Opera House, 129 E. Maumee St. in Adrian.
Elizabeth Baugh, a Toledo resident, plays Carrie’s mother Margaret White. She said “villains are always the most fun.”
“The role in the musical is a little less extreme, or should I say ‘less caricatured’ than the Piper Laurie version in the original film,” Baugh wrote in an email. “In the musical, you get to hear a lot more of Margaret’s backstory, and you get a glimpse into why she treats Carrie the way she does, but don’t be fooled. She’s still frightening, and there are some very physically intense moments in the show.”
Stepping into the iconic role was intimidating, Baugh said.
“Going through the rehearsal process and continually discovering who she is as rehearsals progress has just made me more excited than anything,” she said. “There’s a constant struggle between how much Margaret truly loves Carrie and wants to shield her from the horrors of the world and how her devout obedience to her distorted religious beliefs make living in the White home horrendous enough for Carrie.
“One of the things I love about playing Margaret is getting to sing her songs,” she said. “She has the most chillingly beautiful music in the show, and being able to embody a delightfully horrible character like Margaret and sing these gorgeous songs is an honor and so much fun.”
The play also includes Mariah Valdes as Carrie White. Valdes is a junior majoring in theatre/speech communications at Siena Heights University. She has recently been in productions of “Pride and Prejudice” and “Les Misérables.”
The production is directed by Eric Parker, who is originally from Adrian.
“It’s always nice to come home and have a working vacation,” he said.
Parker said the stage show features songs but doesn’t shy away from horror. He said it’s more of an updated version of the book than the movie and contains special effects.
“It’s trying to find a balance of the supernatural ‘70s campy stuff that the movie and a real exploration of what bullying is,” he said. “Especially the mother-daughter stuff is really riveting.”
Parker’s love for every “crappy horror movie that there is” makes this a fun job for him. The iconic prom scene is still being tweaked. Different kinds of fake blood are being used.
“Everyone’s got their own old wives’ tale about how to make fake blood,” Parker said. “The stuff you buy in Halloween Express or whatever doesn’t wash out very well.”
The show will be on weekends Oct. 17-26. Tickets range in $15-35 and are available online.
For more information, visit croswell.org.