Keegan Flaugh put his theatrical and musical career on hold when he was recently called into active duty to serve as a Marine in Iraq. Now he has returned and plays the role of John, who is also a Marine, in the Carousel Dinner Theatre’s newest production “Miss Saigon.”
Flaugh’s character truly comes to life on stage, probably because of his real-life experience. Flaugh is also surrounded by a cast of lively and talented actors.
“Miss Saigon” is a love story with twists and turns centered on the Vietnam conflict. It comes to life through song at the Carousel Dinner Theatre, 3509 S. Mason St., every weekend through Nov. 7.
The play includes great sound effects of helicopters, gunshots and other background noises. It shows some of the non-war-related issues soldiers face during times of conflict, such as romance and unplanned parenthood. It also gives a glimpse of what happens to locals who are witnessing war in their homeland.
Chris is a Marine, played by Ryan Smykil, who unexpectedly falls in love with Kim played by June Record, a local woman who works in a nightclub for Engineer, played by Kevin Tobias Brown. Chris and Kim are separated because of the war, but their shared love and a child hold them together.
Keegan Flaugh plays John, a Marine who is also Chris’s friend. John stays in contact with Chris after they return to the United States, and he adds a unique quality to his character.
Tobias Brown did a great job of adding a sleazy and humorous touch to his character, the Engineer. Brown also was a pro at interacting with the audience. He evoked sneers and laughter with his occasionally controversial antics as he darted back and forth across the long stage.
Brown’s acting experience extends from past roles in “Secret Garden,” “West Side Story” and “Footloose” at the Carousel to roles in “Floyd Collins” and “Spirit and Soul” in Denver. His great performance in “Miss Saigon” was obvious, he received most of the applause at the end of the show.
Record, who played Kim, pulled the audience into her character’s tragic life and faith in love as she sang with her heart and showed great emotion in her eyes. Record brought a connection to Kim, one of her dream roles, according to the program.
“Miss Saigon,” is directed and produced by Kurt Terrio, owner of the Carousel Dinner Theatre. Terrio has directed and produced more than 20 main stage productions in the past five years. He casts only local talent to perform at the Carousel, which he and his wife, Kate, has owned since 2001.
“Miss Saigon” is a great performance and is served with dinner, including a choice of sweet and sour chicken, Asian pork loin and Asian vegetable stir fry. The ticket price includes entrees. Specialty entrees, appetizers, desserts and drinks can be purchased at additional prices.
“Miss Saigon” until Nov. 7
Thursday through Saturday dinner at 6 p.m. and show at 7:45
Sunday dinner at noon and show at 1:45 p.m.
Tickets: $34 on Thursday and Sunday
$36 on Friday
$38 on Saturday
For tickets call 225-2555