Salient. An Organ of Student Opinion at Victoria University College, Wellington N.Z. Vol. 20, No. 6. May 9, 1957
Shows . . . — Oklahoma
Shows . . .
When I was told that the Wellington Operatic and Theatrical Society were going to present Rodgers and Hammerstein's "Oklahoma," I had my doubts as to whether they would be able to break away completely from the Rombergtype of musical that they have been doing for so long, and whether they would be able to capture the American folk idiom, and whether they would make the ballet convincing American. I am glad to report that they succeeded in nearly every way.
Laurey's Dream Ballet was the highlight of the show. It was danced with precision and spirit, and obviously a lot of hard work had gone in to it. Congratulations to all concerned. The "May a New Day" ballet was well executed, but why did they have to copy the film? By introducing an extra scene (Laurey's bedroom) they broke the flow of the story and caused unnecessary scene changing.
John Archibald as Curly sang and acted well. He made the proposal "scene" acceptable, which in the film made me squirm with embarrassment. Laurey (Kristine de Lacey), once she got over first-night nerves, was a young and attractive heroine. The two lovers were given poor support by Will Parker and Ado Annie. Both failed to make their parts humorous. 'Peter Roberts as Will was unable to keep still for a moment, and Lois Bognuda made Ado Annie seem a little too intelligent. The chorus, possibly too large, sang with gusto and worked as a team.
The only feature in which this production failed to escape the Romberg-type musical was the [unclear: snv] which was far too pantomimish. Laurey's house belonged to me Widow Twankey and not to the plains of Oklahoma. All said and done, however, the show was put across with polish, zest and pace.