If the evening had ended after the first act of the Saints Alive! production of Stephen Sondheim’s dark and twisty Into the Woods, I would declare it a triumph. The innovative youth theatre company manages to pull together talented performers, an interesting and creatively wrought set and lovely costumes. Act 1 weaves together the stories of several familiar fairytale characters as they head into the woods to seek their heart’s desires. It features some outstanding performances, particularly by the big-voiced Tringa Rexhepi as Cinderella, Aislin Flynn as a particularly feisty and frightening Little Red Riding Hood and Andrew Chandler as cursed Baker. The production bogs down in Act 2 when it turns out that some dreams are better off left unrealized and the characters are forced into the woods by an angry giant. The pace slows to a crawl, and the play becomes much less visually interesting.
Alderney Landing Theatre, 2 Ochterloney Street, Dartmouth Waterfront, Dartmouth, Sat May 9, 3pm, Sun May 10, 1pm, $14.99/$19.99, 1-888-311-9090