Play ruthlessly slays audience in town

The Tallahassee Little Theater brings “Ruthless! The Musical” to Tallahassee.

This comedy driven performance plays on the life of its characters that all have turned to lives of ruthlessness to gain stardom.

Joel Paley and Marvin Laird, the creators of the play, use comical satire to its fullest extent in this musical. It opens with a rather large actor, Harry Butler, obviously a man, playing Sylvia St. Croix, the female manager to the stars of the play. The audience is amazed yet tickled by this man’s performance. From this opening scene, the play goes to many extremes to keep the laughs coming.

The second part of Act One opens with 8-year-old Tina Denmark, played by Amy Jenkins of Augusta Raa Middle School. Tina believes she was born to play Pippi Longstocking and will do anything to get the part in her school musical. She does just this by murdering the 11-year-old lead star, played by Jessica Aspiras. After the murder, Tina’s mother, Judy, played by Meghan Bolyard, discovers that she too is destined for stardom when she finds out her birth mother was once a star.

Judy becomes a musical wonder and her daughter is sent to the crazy house. Judy forgets her daughter and lives her new life.

Other characters in the play are just as determined to get their spotlight, and will do just about anything to get it. However, with the many stories being told, the play doesn’t do a good job of staying focused on one story.

Every character mentioned is “Ruthless!”, hence the title. From the daughter to the mother to the schoolteacher to the assistant, each character is out to gain something for him- or herself. Thus, the last song sung in the play accurately goes, “the key to success is Ruthlessness!”

Although the play is based on comedy, many of its events questioned morality. From cross-dressing to children murdering and cursing, it’s definitely not a family show.

It is, however, full of laughs and would be enjoyed by anyone out for a good time.

The play is being shown at The Tallahassee Little Theater Jan. 24 – 27 and Jan.31- Feb.3.