North Shore Music Theatre’s high spirited MY FAIR LADY is definitely enhanced by being performed in the round. When there isn’t room for large set pieces, you have to think up some ingenious alternatives to backdrops and heavy machinery and NSMT does!
Choreographer Michael Lichtefeld delivers clever, punchy dancing which plays beautifully from all angles and director Charles Repole gets charming performances from all the leads, just unique enough to set them apart from all the other Lerner and Loewe productions of the musical. Charles Shaughnessy as Prof. Higgins is as debonair as he is pompous and Lisa O’Hare is delicately, sweetly naïve as Eliza.
Hayden Tee makes Freddie a lot more than the smitten buffoon most actors make him out to be. Bill Dietrich is plenty charismatic as Eliza’s father (justifying Higgins’ suggestion that he become a lecturer on morality). But it’s the fine local actors who make the secondary roles pop: Sarah deLima gets lots of laughs as Higgins’ no nonsense mother, as does Cheryl McMahon as Higgins’ skeptical housekeeper. Ellen Peterson, too, sparkles in several roles, the three woman adding personality and savvy to the production. Even if they had repeated all the songs, I could have watched all night!