Broadway classic comes to E.J.


Sofia Syed

The traveling performance of Guys and Dolls make a stop in Akron to give the tony awarding musical on stage.

By Sofia Syed, Writer

An enthusiastic crowd filled the seats at E.J. Thomas Hall on Jan. 17 and 18 to see the Tony award winning musical, “Guys and Dolls.”

This well-known musical originated on Broadway in 1950, and since then, it has been adapted and reproduced throughout the years.

“Guys and Dolls,” set in New York City, tells an unconventional love story between lying gamblers and determined women.

Nathan Detroit is trying to find a location to hold his floating craps game, and decide whether to finally move forward with his fourteen-year engagement to Adelaide. Sky Masterson has taken a bet to win over Sarah Brown, a stubborn sergeant who is trying to save her mission group.

This traveling production has an astounding cast that took this musical to another level. Their vocal and acting abilities made “Guys and Dolls” even more enjoyable.

The show went off without a hitch except during one of the musical numbers when a background dancer could not get her hat unattached from her hair. She was very poised, and seemingly unfazed. She eventually got the hat off, without missing any beats, and the crowd applauded her.

Matthew Taylor, who played Sky Masterson, expressed his talent through his charisma and his singing voice. The entire cast had a good chemistry and they all seemed to be enjoying themselves as well.

Judy Laushman, attendee at the performance, said that Sky Masterson’s voice blew her away. “I’ve been to a lot of big productions, and this was my favorite,” she said.

Another audience member, Charlotte Snyder, has seen multiple productions of “Guys and Dolls,” including the movie, and said, “It jolts you to hear them sing so well, it’s very enjoyable.”

This seemingly dramatic plot finished off on a lively note that left the audience buzzed and cheerful.

The music and lyrics were written by Frank Loesser and it gave “Guys and Dolls” an energetic and entertaining atmosphere. The songs provided comic relief, and a way for the characters to express their emotions.

“It’s a feel good show that leaves you humming,” said attendee, Andrew Pace. “It was a good adaptation of a dated show.” Pace then continued to talk about how modern and sleek the set design looked. He also said the cast was age appropriate and vocally fit the characters.

A couple who was in the audience on Jan. 18 have a particular reason to love this musical. They created a love story of their own, back in the day, when they both worked on “Guys and Dolls.” Rick Sampson worked on the sets, and the now Maryjane Sampson worked in the beauty department. The day after the show finished, he proposed. They have now been married for almost 46 years. “This show always brings tears to my eyes,” Maryjane said, reminiscing.

The energy from the cast made a positive impact for the show which made it so enjoyable for those who attended the musical.