Past Reviews

Regional Reviews: Florida - West Coast

The Book of Mormon
National Tour
Review by William S. Oser | Season Schedule

Also see Bill's review of All the Way


The Cast
Photo by Joan Marcus
The verdict has been in on The Book of Mormon since it opened on Broadway in 2011: raves from the critics;, a handful of Tony Awards including Best Musical, Best Book, Best Original Score, and Best Direction of a Musical; and it continues to play to capacity audiences with a $400+ price tag for premium seats for the most desirable performances.

The show is something of an homage to musical comedies of a by-gone era. It has a lot of dancing. including a featured tap number, a story, satire, and an overall sense of merriment at its core. Its style would not have been wildly out of place on Broadway circa 1950s.

The second national tour looks to be in pretty good shape. The ensemble work is reasonably sharp, the sets and costumes in good shape, and performances by the leads at an acceptable level for an Equity tour. Ryan Bondy as Elder Price, recently promoted from standby, is a solid presence and his singing is on a high level. Cody Jamison Strand as the comic Elder Cunningham is excellent, also revealing real feelings underneath. Candace Quarrels as Nabulungi shines in her big moment, "Sal Tlay Ka Sit." The capacity audience at the performance I attended at Van Wezel certainly got its money's worth.

I would advise you to rush to Van Wezel for a chance to see a fun musical, though word on the street is that they are completely sold out. Check the box office for last minute availability.

The Book of Mormon at Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall in Sarasota through February 14, 2016. For more information, call 800 826-9303 or visit www.VanWezel.org. For more information on the tour, visit bookofmormonbroadway.com/tour.

Cast (in order of appearance):
Mormon: Dereck Seay
Moroni: Daxton Bloomquist
Elder Price: Ryan Bondy
Elder Cunningham: Cody Jamison Strand
Missionary Voice: Edward Watts
Price's Dad: Edward Watts
Cunningham's Dad: CJ Pawlikowski
Mrs. Brown: Monica L. Patton
Guards: Will Lee-Williams, Marcus Terrell Smith
Mafala: Sterling Jarvis
Nabulungi: Candace Quarrels
Doctor: Melvin Brandon Logan
Elder McKinley: Daxton Bloomquist
Joseph Smith: Edward Watts
General: David Aron Damane
Mission President: Edward Watts: Ensemble: Charnette Batey, Kevin Clay, Jake Emmerling, Eric Geil, Jacob Haren, Daryn Whitney Harrell, AntwaunHolley, Eric Huffman, Kolby Kindle, Will Lee-Williams, Melvin Brandon Logan, Monica L. Patton, CJ Pawlikowski, Dereck Seay, Marcus Terrell Smith, Nichole Turner

The Book of Mormon Orchestra:
Conductor/Keyboard 1: David Truskinoff
Associate Conductor/Keyboard II: Adam Laird
Guitar: Tim Morey
Bass: Marc Hogan
Drums: Jeff MacPherson
Keyboard Programmer: Randy Cohen


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