Sometimes the gentle, soft, romantic comedies make for the best shows of the summer. Other times, the script makes little sense and the softness of said script is too soft to really make any impact. And then there are the times that the show meets somewhere in the middle. Samuel Taylor’s A Touch of Spring, currently receiving its regional premier at Miners Alley Playhouse, is one of those shows that sits happily in the middle.
A Touch of Spring is the story of Sandy Claiborne, an American business tycoon that has taken his wife to an expensive hotel in Rome. He is there to make arrangements for the transfer home of his father’s body, killed in a car crash. While he is there, he meets Alison, who he finds out is on a similar mission, as her mother was in killed in the same car accident. Sandy sends his wife home, gets wrapped up in all the romantic entanglements that a holiday abroad would provide, and meets some of the most intriguing Italian people that help him decide what is truly important in life.
A Touch of Spring is gentle and soft. It is understated and quiet – much like Taylor’s other well known work, Sabrina Fair. Unlike Sabrina Fair, the problem with A Touch of Spring is that Taylor hasn’t provided much to care about. The storyline itself doesn’t make a lot of sense, and the characters are not very likable. With one very notable exception, that is. Baldassare Pantaleone, Baldo for short, is easily the most likeable character in the show. He is truly the only character that the audience grows to love, and ends up stealing the night. In fact, most of the production is spent waiting for Baldo to come back on stage.
Directed by Richard H. Pegg, the cast does a decent job with the material they have been given. Though Rachel Bouchard as Diana Claiborne felt disconnected and completely detached from Sandy, played by Brian Landis Folkins. Folkins hands in a respectable performance with some nice moments of honesty and connection while Bethany Lillis’s Alison is mostly likeable and warm. The performance to see though is Michael Bouchard as Baldo. Leaping on to the stage with as much energy and gusto as anyone could ask for, he is an absolute pleasure to watch. With a believable Italian accent, a mischievous grin, and a playful enthusiasm he is absolutely worth the drive to Golden to see.
A Touch of Spring may not be this summer’s biggest comedy hit, but there is something here worth your attention. It is a nice choice for this time of year, when a light-hearted romp is perfect for a warm summer evening.
Miners Alley Playhouse Presents:
A Touch of Spring
Through August 28
Tickets are $19 – $26.50
call 303-935-3044 for tickets
Or click here for tickets and details