A review of Encore's “Always….Patsy Cline”

. May 15, 2016.

The Encore Musical Theatre Company, located in the historical village of Dexter, is a non-profit organization where theater enthusiasts experience a Broadway atmosphere in a very intimate setting. The founders Daniel Cooney and Anne and Paul Koch strive to create quality theater productions with the emphasis being in musical theater.

The latest installment in The Encore's portfolio is "Always…..Patsy Cline". Based on a true story created by Ted Swindley, an internationally known writer and director the show opened Thursday, April 14 and ran through Sunday, May 8 to mostly sold out shows and not a dry eye in the house.

Upon entering the theater, the audience was immediately transported back to 1957, with the stage design setting segmented into three parts; a country kitchen, a five man band and an old time country bar with jukebox.  The musical opens with the sultry sounds of Patsy Cline (played by Emmi Veinbergs) singing “Back in Baby’s Arms” and continues through the performance with a litany of songs that made Patsy Cline famous such as, “Walkin’ After Midnight”, “I fall to Pieces”, “Sweet Dreams” and “Crazy”. Louise Seger (played by Sonja Marquis) gives the onlookers an eyewitness account of her friendship with the famous starlet, from the first time she heard Cline on the radio to the evening she met her singing in a Honky tonk Bar and how they ultimately become fast friends.

The soulful songs combined with a lighthearted storyline blend together so well that for a few hours you forget where you are. The musical closes with Louise reliving the day she heard of Patsy Cline's sudden death and how the legend changed her life forever.

Emmi Veinbergs returned to the stage to play Patsy Cline after graduating Point Park University with a degree in Performing Arts. Veinbergs is able to capture and recreate the essence of the songs that made Patsy Cline famous while making each song her own. However, the show would not be complete without narrator Louise Segar, played by Sonja Marquis. Marquis's humorous and honest narrative of Louise's experiences with Patsy Cline balances the scales. At some point you can’t decide if you’d rather laugh or cry.

If you would like to attend future shows or find out how to support The Encore, go to theencoretheatre.org or call them at 734-268-6200.

Coming to The Encore this summer:
*"Assassins-A Musical" by Stephen Sondheim and John Weidman; June 9th-July 3rd
*"My Fair Lady"; August 4th-August 28th

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