"Little Shop of Horrors" opens in Foley tonight

By Allison Marlow
Managing Editor
allisonm@gulfcoastmedia.com
Posted 9/30/22

FOLEY — This little shop is truly horrifying.Fans of the 1986 cult classic "Little Shop of Horrors" might find the wacky script comedic compared to present-day horror films. The cast of Exit …

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"Little Shop of Horrors" opens in Foley tonight

Residents of Skid Row, Sabrina Lee and Ella Pratt, hang out with Audrey II as they prepare for this weekend's production of "Little Shop of Horrors" by Exit Stage Left. The show runs this weekend in Foley.
Residents of Skid Row, Sabrina Lee and Ella Pratt, hang out with Audrey II as they prepare for this weekend's production of "Little Shop of Horrors" by Exit Stage Left. The show runs this weekend in Foley.
Allison Marlow / Gulf Coast Media
Posted

FOLEY — This little shop is truly horrifying.

Fans of the 1986 cult classic "Little Shop of Horrors" might find the wacky script comedic compared to present-day horror films. The cast of Exit Stage Left in Foley, however, is growing an Audrey II that is absolutely terrifying.

"Audrey II will be done like you've never seen her before," director Chase S. Morrisette hints. "She definitely takes over the stage."

The puppet, crafted in-house by Exit Stage Left crew, will be brought to life by two puppeteers, a role that while silent is perhaps more challenging than those singing in front of the pesky plant.

"The puppeteers have to be very in tune with the voice actor," Morrisette said. "It really is where two people become one when the puppet is in use. It's very challenging."

Not to mention physically exhausting.

Audiences won't see those puppeteers sweating as they hold their arms up in the air for much of the production. Audrey II becomes the blood-thirsty botanical through the talents of Jeff B. Hughes and Van Litton, no stranger to playing the bad guy. Litton wowed audiences as the witch from Exit Stage Left's spring production of "Into the Woods."

Morrisette first directed "Little Shop of Horrors" five years ago and kept his production campy and set in the 1960s just like the original movie script. This is the first show he has returned to for a second production, and this time he wanted more blood, more horror and more people. Morrisette added an ensemble of skid row characters to what was originally a very limited cast. The show's timeline has also been moved up to present day.

"We broadened the scope and the whole tone of the show," he said. "Each of these characters has a very dark story.

"It was a fun challenge to force myself to look at the show from a different viewpoint and make it different from what I've already done," he said.

The lead roles of Seymour and Audrey will be familiar faces for audiences. River Hallex, Seymour, is a regular on stages across Baldwin County, recently serving as Captain Von Trapp in Orange Beach earlier this year and as a prince in Exit Stage Left's "Into the Woods."

Tessa Moody, Audrey, journeyed with audiences into the woods as the baker's wife in that production and is well known throughout the county as a certified makeup artist and faculty member at The Studio in Daphne.

The cast is rounded out with Craig Handel as Mushnik, Garrett as Orin, Cailey Mize as Crystal, Ella Pratt as Ronnette, Sabrina Lee as Chiffon, Mary Burts as Patrick Martin, Daphne Stainbrook as Skip Snip, Amanda Hein as Mrs. Luce and a gutter full of skid row citizens: Allana Wheeler, Caymen Elizabeth Russell, Kaelee McCoy, Josiah Thomas and Bailee Cosette.

"Little Shop of Horrors" runs this weekend only. For tickets, visit www.exitstageleft.org

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