The Hawthorne Players, now in their 68th year, are currently staging a somewhat uneven production of "The Secret Garden" at the Florissant Civic Center Theatre.
A reverie more than a drama, this production is enthralling. The simple story line is interspersed with dream sequences, incantations and other ethereal elements. This musical ignites our imagination with its hypnotic score by Lucy Simon. Beguiling Irish rhythms compete with plaintive airs. The lush design elements immerse us in an opulent fairy tale juxtaposed with morbid reality. The surrealistic design of Marsh Norman’s libretto prevents the play from wallowing in melodrama. Director Michael Hamilton pulls it all together.
With each successive show, Over Due Theatre Company continues to grow and improve. Their current production is the musical adaptation of Frances Hodgson Burnett's novel, The Secret Garden. While this ambitious production might not be a complete success, it's certainly entertaining and moving.