Throughout Orange Coast College’s performance of “Peter and the Starcatcher,” the audience witnessed the enchanting power of starstuff — the magical stuff that makes Peter Pan fly.
Starstuff is pieces of stars the fall to Earth, little bits that look like sand. It makes you what you want to be. But beware, for catastrophe may ensue if it falls into the hands of the evil or greedy.
“Peter and the Starcatcher,” a family-friendly play based on the 2004 novel by Dave Barry and Ridley Pearson, is a prequel to J. M. Barrie’s famous 1904 play “Peter Pan, or the Boy Who Wouldn’t Grow Up.”
The musical, a faculty-directed Drama Lab production, is directed by Tom Bruno. During the play, starstuff makes cats fly, turns fishes into mermaids and even a man into a mermaid, which is how my favorite scene came to be.
A mob of mermaids made up of different characters in the play appeared in stunning mermaid costumes on stage and begin a musical act.
OCC student Cole Chambers’ portrayal of the lead mermaid is truly captivating, mesmerizing and hilarious. It was reminiscent of old Hollywood and the New York City Rockettes’ can-can.
I couldn’t help but smile, laugh and image myself up there can-canning too.
“Vino bianco! Trebbiano! Moscat! Pinot grigio!” These words completely out of context may seem random and odd, however this the language of the Mollusk Island natives, where Peter and the rest of the cast get stranded during their pursuit of starstuff.
The mollusk’s native language is a food lover’s paradise as they constantly shout different dishes: cannelloni, linguini and calamari. I’m surprised I didn’t get hungry.
Truly the mollusk king had a terrible past and reason for his language and law: All English must die. When he was a young man, the English landed on Mollusk Island, took him in chains and for years he served as kitchen slave.
Although OCC student Marco Solis’ comedic flare and timing as the mollusk king Fighting Prawn is impeccable, that even through that tragic past; the mollusk king entertains and knows how to grab attention.
Up next was Captain Hook, or I should say, Black Stache.
My favorite “Peter Pan” characters have and always been and will be Tinkerbell, then Peter, but Captain Hook is a close third.
So imagine my surprise seeing OCC student Dominic De Los Santos’ lively and Russell Brand-inspired depiction. It was amazing. The audience wouldn’t have gotten the iconic childhood duo without his right-hand man Smee, portrayed by OCC student Abraham Arias.
Of course, I refuse to spoil all the juicy details and action.
“Peter and the Starcatcher” runs at the Drama Lab Theatre until May 12.
Performances are scheduled for 7:30 p.m. May 10 and 12, and a matinee performance at 2:30 p.m. on May 12.