DRACULA is one of the BEST PLAYS to hit SONOMA in a LONG TIME!
I’ve attended MANY plays in Sonoma at Andrews Hall on the Rotary stage, have seen countless plays on Broadway in New York and in San Francisco
at A.C.T. as well as at the Curran. Recently I had the pleasure of attending (several times now!) Silver Moon theatre’s production of DRACULA starring Len Handeland as Count Dracula and directed by Nellie Cravens. Everything from the set (which rumor has it, was built by someone who had built sets for A.C.T. and the San Francisco Opera company) a special effects person who had worked in L.A. with Francis Ford Coppola has elevated what a person would think of as “Community theatre” The acting is spot on, Len Handeland (as Count Dracula) captures the essence of “the King of all Vampires” Evil, diabolical, intense and downright TERRORIFIYING! He is mersmerizing to watch, captures the audience and virtually steals the show! His performance as the Count is hypnotic you might say! The supporting cast, Matt Witthaus as Professor Van Helsing (Count Dracula’s adversary and mortal enemy) plays his character intensely, with such conviction and concentration that it appears Count Dracula has a formidable opponenet in him! North Bay Actor veteran (Dan Monez) who has appeared in MANY North Bay productions (most recently “The Full Monty” & Cabaret and many others in Sonoma and Napa) is brilliant as Dr Seward (who runs the Sanitorium where Renfield, Dracula’s servant is kept) plays his character with elegance and grace. The youthful Michael Hunter (who plays Renfield) is equally as intense and a bit disturbing as the fly eating servant to Dracula. Michael Miller’s performance as the frustrated, concerned, fiance to Lucy Seward, is very convincing and is able to convey his emotions brilliantly! A mention goes out to Susan Lee (Alice the Maid) as well as George Bereschik as the Attendant (at the Seward Sanitorium) lend laughter and a bit of frivolity to an otherwise dark, eerie, terrorifying play! Courtney Bristow as Dracula’s victim and daughter of Dr Seward, plays the victim beautifully, her life force being drained out of her with every visit by her immortal suitor (Dracula) All in all I would give this (as the late Siskel & Ebert used to say) a four thumbs up! Everyone should run, not walk! To see this amazing (professionally) staged production of play writes Hamilton Deane and John Halderston. This is a production that would make Bram Stoker proud!
Byron W Hancock CFP Byron@hancock-partners.com Tel: (415) 987-6111