Archive for December 2016

“Treasure Island” presented by Book-It

Loud, loud and lively, very loud and lively. Book-It’s “Treasure Island” includes an energetic, quite good cast who play out their roles in blaring voice on a fine set, but if you are not a fan of Robert Louis Stevenson’s classic children’s book, “Treasure Island,” this may not be the production for you.

It’s the quintessential adventure novel for young boys, popular since the late 19th Century. The story centers on Jim Hawkins, an innkeeper’s son on the coast of England. Sailors both good and evil frequent the inn, and much to his delight, Jim winds up on a sailing ship bound for a mysterious island in the South Seas where a found map suggests there’s buried treasure. What a voyage: pirates, Long John Silver, mutiny, cannons, the treasure island itself, its hidden map, pitched battles on shipboard as well as land, wounds, deaths, skullduggery, and even a happy ending for some (including Jim).

Bryan Burch created, the adaptation, and Director Corey McDaniel has assembled a good cast and a wonderful production crew. Overwhelming the stage is the deck of a sailing ship whose huge mast rises to the rafters. We, the audience can never lose sight of that ship, yet Director Corey McDaniel has cleverly set his action on and around the massive vessel, be it in the wharf-side inn run by the mother of our hero, Jim Hawkins, or on the treasure island itself. Christopher Mumaw gets credit for this stage set which is even more effective with Evan Anderson’s clever lighting.

Alex Silva plays Young Jim Hawkins with panache. He evinces all the awe, fright, and bravado that make Jim such a favorite of readers young and old. And, of course, what would “Treasure Island” be without a captivating but fearsome Long John Silver? Geoffrey Simmons gives him all the bravado the part demands.

So, if swashbuckling stories delight you, this will be most satisfying. But be warned: it’s very loud.

Through December 24 by Book-It at the Center Theatre in the Armory. Seattle Center, Seattle, (206-216-0833 or www.book-it.org).