Randall Theatre presents splashy 'Singin' in the Rain'

    Robin Downward plays Don Lockwood in the Randall production of the musical 'Singin' in the Rain,' running through Feb. 11 at the Jacksonville theater. [Mail Tribune / Jamie Lusch]

    Get ready for the perfect storm when Randall Theatre opens its 2018 season of stage productions with a downpour of unforgettable songs from the movie musical "Singin' in the Rain."

    The story follows song and dance team Don Lockwood and Lina Lamont as the film production company they work for makes the difficult transition from silent films to "talkies." Lockwood and Lamont were a hot item in silent movies but, behind the scenes, things aren't always as they appear on the big screen. Meanwhile, Lamont's squeaky voice might be the end of her career without the help of a young actress to do the talking and singing for her.

    Look for such magical songs as "Singin' in the Rain," "Make 'Em Laugh," "Good Morning" and others.

    Shows are set for 7 p.m. Friday and Saturday, Jan. 19-20, Thursdays through Saturdays, Jan. 25 through Feb. 10, and 2 p.m. Sundays through Feb. 11 at Randall Theatre's Jacksonville location in the Calvary church building, at 520 N. Fifth St.  Tickets are $22 for seats in the first three rows or $20 for other reserved seats. Thrifty Thursday tickets are $15 or $17. Tickets and information are available at randalltheatre.com or by calling 541-632-3258. Pay-what-you-want tickets are available 30 minutes before shows, subject to availability.

    Livia Genise directs. Robin Downward plays Don Lockwood, Elizabeth Suzanne plays Lina Lamont, Emy Rosales plays Cosmo Brown, and Deborah Downward plays Cathy Selden. Musical direction is by Suzanne, and choreography is by Deborah Downward. 

    "Singin’ in the Rain" brings more than the usual challenges, says Randall artistic director Robin Downward.

    "To bring to life one of the most popular movie musicals ever involves not only mounting a huge Broadway musical, but also incorporating the use of special effects and the inter-workings of multiple film sequences projected alongside live action," he says.

    As the characters in "Singin’ in the Rain" take their journey, many scenes occur not only on stage, but also in silent and talking films.

    True to Randall's commitment to top-quality productions, the silent and talking black-and-white films used in the show were created by the theater company's own video crew. Video projections are not used much in live stage performances, but if used correctly, they can enhance a production and bring it to another level. Along with the video crew, actors, scenery, props, period costumes, wigs and makeup all add to the silent and “talkies” shown onstage during this production, Downward says.

    Randall's production team also had to figure out how to make it rain on stage.

    "Our video team came up with a way of having it rain on stage without getting anyone wet,” Downward says.

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