When Joseph Cardinal was selecting his next musical, there was a certain show that just screamed “Pick me, pick me.”
Based on the Oscar-winning DreamWorks Animation film, Shrek The Musical is a Tony Award-winning fairy tale adventure, featuring all new songs from Jeanine Tesori (Thoroughly Modern Millie; Caroline, or Change) and a sidesplitting book by David Lindsay-Abaire. Shrek brings all the beloved characters you know from the film to life on stage and proves there’s more to the story than meets the ears.
Cardinal decided to revisit the show with Windsor dates from Feb. 7 to 16 and Kingsville shows from Feb. 21 to 23.
This isn’t your first attempt at Shrek. Why did you want to redo it?
It’s been five years since we performed Shrek. I felt the timing was right. The show offers many opportunities for many actors and it is always a crowd pleaser.
Will there be much difference in the show?
Pretty much everything, different actors, different blocking, and different choreography.
What makes Shrek such an enjoyable show?
From the point of view of the actor it is very enjoyable playing a cartoon character. Audiences love the dancing and singing and positive vibe the show gives off in general.
Who is your favorite character in the show and why?
Well for me it’s Shrek. He makes no bones about being who he is and he ultimately proves looks mean very little in life. Substance is everything.
Are there any considerations you have to take when you bring an animated show into real life?
I think you have to be honest and not attempt to be something you are not.
As a lover of musical theatre yourself, what are some of the aspects of Shrek that make it so appealing?
Almost everything about it for me. Great costumes, large cast, fantastic score and a multitude of great characters.
What can you tell me about the music and songs in Shrek?
In general it is music that you will leave the theatre singing and as always the songs help to tell the tale.
Costumes are important for Shrek, what approach do you take to costuming this one?
We purchased, rented and built costumes for this show.
There are four key roles in the show. What were you looking for when you cast for it?
When I cast I always look for people with the abilities to perform the parts. Singing is always essential. For some parts dancing is also a must. There is so much that goes into casting and I could talk about it for days. I will say this I am very happy with our entire cast
There are some differences between the original Broadway and the touring version. Which one are you taking on?
The touring version is what was rented to us
I bet you’re dying to get your hands into a musical after diving into a drama (One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest) last show.
Actually it was a nice break for me and I enjoyed it.
This time out you added a couple shows in Kingsville. Why did you extend the run out in the county?
I thought it would be fun to perform the show in another venue and it is something I would like to continue to do.
When can we expect to hear about some upcoming shows?
Well we are doing Frozen Jr. in June but I have not announced my fall show yet. I have time, I want to see what new titles will be released.