Let me start off by saying The Little Mermaid is my all time favourite Disney movie. I know the words to all the songs, I could recite it line by line and to me, it’s almost sacred! Having said that, I was more than a little exited to see the Lower Ossington Theatres (LOT) production of it! This was the first time that I saw a play from the LOT play at the Randolph Theatre. It’s a lot bigger than the stages at the Ossington location and used for the bigger production plays. It used to be a church so our seats in the balcony were actually pews (surprisingly comfortable).
Keep in mind, the LOT doesn’t have a Mirvish budget, but I almost always walk away from one of their productions impressed and I always really enjoy seeing their new plays.
The Little Mermaid play closed on Broadway in 2009 and I was pretty sad that I didn’t get the chance to see it. The original production underperformed and didn’t last too long, and to be honest after seeing the play, I can see why. There were some inconsistencies & its generally tough trying to portray half of the characters being ‘underwater’ (some main underwater characters used roller skate sneakers to create the illusion of floating and gliding). Things that I enjoyed about the play were new songs, ‘I Want The Goods Times Back’ which gives a little more backstory between Ursula & King Triton & ‘Positoovity’ performed by Scuttle and his pals.
The classic musical numbers ‘Under the Sea’ & ‘Kiss the Girl’ were well done& a joy to watch. The costumes were adorable & creative. My friend & I were particularly fond of the giant snail.
The play is cutesy and definitely made for children, so know this before making your purchase. I knew this going into it but as a 30 year old woman, still enjoyed it. My friend & I actually ended up coincidentally whispering “Yaaaay” together when the lights went down to start the second half of the play.
Ariel is played by Kate Suhr and is a true professional. She’s no stranger to playing leads; in fact, I recently saw her playing the role of Mary Poppins at the LOT as well. Her voice sounded a lot like the Ariel from the movies and she’s a great singer, so that was a lot of fun. The kids in the audience were really excited to see her and kept waving or squealing whenever she floated out onto the stage.
Who really ended up stealing the show was Ursula played by Saphire Demitro. Saying she was fantastic would be an understatement. She was excellent at playing the villain, and her voice is absolutely incredible. I felt that she was so good that she was almost out of place in this play. I feel like she is on her way to something big and wonderful and is definitely one to watch!
During the play there was an unexpected issue with the sound and the background music suddenly stopped. During the awkward pause where Sebastian the crab (played by Harold Lumilan) was due to sing a solo to Ariel, he decided to sing acapella after a prolonged period of silence. I feel like he couldn’t have done it any better. The audience appreciated it too, and he was met with applause. The delay lasted about 2 minutes. Unfortunately, this isn’t the only sound issue I’ve experience at a LOT production. I sometimes find that the character’s mic’s aren’t loud enough or the microphones aren’t turned on in time for them to read a line and the first few words are quiet. It’s the only complaint I have about the LOT and really enjoy their plays otherwise.
All in all, I had fun with all the nostalgia. If you have children who enjoy Disney productions, I would recommend LOT’s The Little Mermaid as a family night out. I do believe the production is coming to a close, but this is the second year in a row they have done the play, so I’m sure it will be back at The Randolph soon. If you can’t make it in time for closing, Mary Poppins is still playing at the LOT’s Ossington location. For ticket information visit www.lowerossingtontheatre.com or keep an eye out on Groupon, as I’ve seen tickets pop up from time to time. Also, I suggest signing up for the LOT’s e-mail newsletter, as I’ve gotten a lot of e-mails with specials or promo codes.
Until next event!
Hey! I'm Sarah! A 30 something living in downtown Toronto with a great guy and an OK dog. I love seeing what my city has to offer and try to hit up as many fun events or attractions as I can! I haven't slept since 2004.