Vikings take over Talespinner Children’s Theatre in their latest production, Loki & Lucy. Based on Norse mythology, the play was adapted to stage by Cleveland State University playwright professor Michael Geither and is directed by Talespinner’s own Alison Garrigan.
Loki & Lucy intertwines the story of Lucy (played by an energetic Melissa T. Crum), a girl who lives with her mom and is obsessed with stories (especially ones about Vikings), with classic Norse mythology. Lucy falls asleep reading Viking tales only to be whisked away by a magical man she knows lives in a tree near her. (Remember, she loves stories and makes them up about everything — trees, even the flowers patterned on her favorite chair.)
The man turns out to be Loki (Bryan Ritchey), a Norse god of trickery and mischief, and Lucy finds herself aboard a Viking ship on a mission to save Loki… from something. He just wants to be saved (or so he claims).
Lucy meets many interesting characters with hard to pronounce Norwegian names (the audience is even asked to pronounce the names together for practice). She becomes friends with the affable and hilariously animated Thorbjorn Horgabrudr (try saying that one…) played by Nate Miller and helps the super macho Thor (Nicholas Chokan) carve a chain to restrain Loki’s mean son/dog, Fenrir (Brittany Gaul).
There is a lot going on here. But even if kids get confused about the plot, I don’t think it matters. There are enough jokes, funny expressions and over-the-top characters to keep anyone amused. Talespinner Children’s Theatre productions certainly aren’t dumbed downed for kids. They aim to produce intelligent shows that all ages can enjoy… and think about, if you’re old enough to piece together the details. This is not to say the shows are confusing (though some of the names were hard to keep straight); there is a depth to these plays not always inherent in children’s entertainment.
Loki & Lucy is energetic, visually appealing (especially the actors’ expressions, which were over-the-top in the most delightful ways) and interspersed with Norwegian-themed music. Chalk this up as another enjoyable adventure from Talespinner Children’s Theatre. If you haven’t taken your family there yet, GO, sit back and enjoy.
Cool Cleveland editor Sarah Valek studied art and writing at Ithaca College. After graduation, she came back to Cle and served two years as an AmeriCorps*VISTA with the Northeast Ohio Coalition for the Homeless. She can be found on all sides of the city in pursuit of homeschooling activities for her son and the perfect soy latte. Contact her at CoolEditorATCoolCleveland.com or via Twitter.