Mass: a Review

Submitted by: Submitted by

Views: 257

Words: 628

Pages: 3

Category: Music and Cinema

Date Submitted: 03/08/2011 01:24 PM

Report This Essay

Mass: a pure musical experience for the powerful triad of singer, dancer, and actor. Dominic Missimi’s production of Leonard Bernstein’s Mass has the audience riveted from start to finish with tear-inducing vocals, heart-wrenching acting, and incredible dancing. The play follows a Catholic Mass, beginning with the performers in agreement with the Celebrant. As the Mass proceeds, the performers (or the choir) begin to question the need of God in their lives and the role of the Mass. This skepticism comes to a head when it spreads to the Celebrant himself, causing the choir to collapse to the ground as if dead. Harmony is restored when the altar server arrives and sings praises to the Lord and reminds the choir and the Celebrant of the glory of God. Mass explores the journey of faith and dedication through a series of both beautiful ballads and upbeat scores. Missimi presents a production that successfully portrays this journey through his utilization of a high number of actors, a large-scale set, and talents that have the audience in standing ovations.

Missimi doesn’t mess around with petty exposition. He immediately begins the show with the entire attendance of the mass processing down the aisles singing directly to the audience. The number was upbeat and set the energy very high both on stage and within the audience. It introduced every member of the choir and created that bustling feeling comparable to that of the beginning of an adventure. The singing is obviously incredibly rehearsed and shows off the immense talent on stage. Every actor on stage is emotionally present and giving their highest energy to the beginning number. This energy remained salient throughout the production. My initial thought was that having nearly one hundred actors on stage at one time would be distracting and the energy would diminish while the choir was not performing. I did not give these professionals enough credit. Each actor was both emotionally and physically...