Last weekend, ORU Music and Theatre performed a reenactment of the 2017 Tony-nominated musical “She Loves Me.” The romantic comedy followed Amalia Balish (played by Amalia Heiser) and Georg Nowack (played by Timothy Conn) as they worked alongside each other at a Parfumerie. Both, frequently butting heads in discourse, are unaware that they are one another’s romantic pen pal.
The production, directed by Laura Holland, was filled with well-executed humor, hit-and-miss vocal performances and an overall flamboyant nature. It told a charming story of expectations, betrayal and unforeseen love. While several scenes droned on, there was redemption in character development.
Adriana Cortez’s performance as a supporting role was as strong as her bold and spirited character, Ilona Ritter. Cortez brought the perfect amount of entertaining sass and feminine strength to the production.
The characters of Ritter, Mr. Maraczek (played by Wesley Houts) and Balish all work together to tell the different outcomes of loving someone, both heartbreaking and endearing. While Ritter’s failed attempt at love leads to her finding contentment in being alone and independent, Maraczek’s experience shows the dark reality some face when love does not live up to their hopes. Balish and Nowack satisfy the audience with an ending that reveals the capability of love that can be found in the most unexpected places.
The musical score, directed by Michelle Eiler, set the playful yet down-to-earth tone of the play and even featured the ORU Chamber Singers in the second act. The set and costume-design encapsulated 1930’s European style and vibrant color.
By incorporating strong key emblems, true-to-the-time designs, enthusiastic acting and positive underlying messages, the cast and crew of “She Loves Me” undoubtedly brought hope to the hopeless in their first production of the year.