Join the Cleveland Scene Press Club. Because No News is Bad News.

Monday, March 30, 2015

Review: 'Rosalynde & the Falcon' from Talespinner Children's Theatre

Posted By on Mon, Mar 30, 2015 at 12:39 PM

If you’re an adult, see if you can get a child you know to take you to this show designed for kids. Because it is one hilarious romp from start to finish, thanks to a charming and whip-smart script by local playwright David Hansen and a cast that is having so much fun, you begin to bemoan the fact that it will ever stop.

But it does stop, after 50 minutes, and it leaves you with that floaty feeling you get when stepping off a roller coaster. By the way, all the little ones in the audience loved it too.

Based on an English folktale, young Rosalynde (a charming and feisty Shayla Gordon) is under the thumb of her evil uncle, the King (the imposing Christopher Walker who also doubles later on as various women). The big meanie is forcing his niece to clean out the filthy stables…with a teaspoon! So she runs away from her royal prison and meets up with three thieves in the forest. These robbers look suspiciously like the Marx Brothers, right down to Groucho’s bushy mustache and Harpo’s curly wig and many-pocketed trench coat.

Named after the brothers’ birth names, Charles Hargrave as Julius does a nice deadpan turn as Groucho and Tim Pringpuangkeo as Leo has loads of fun as Chico. The Harpo character is named Rusty (not Adolph, Harpo's real birth name), for a reason to be revealed later, and Valerie C. Kilmer is an absolute stitch. She whips all sorts of props out of her coat, including the ever-present horn, and fixes the audience with that Harpo stare and smile. The thieves offer to help Rosalynde and she adopts a disguise as the Robin Hood-like Falcon, the savior of the poor.

Lithe and non-ambiguously fey Devon Turchan is a comic goldmine as Roland, the King’s son and Rosalynde's longtime pal and cousin. Leaping across the stage like a graceful, slightly less demented Ed Grimley, Turchan’s Roland is unfailingly optimistic but endearingly daft, and you literally can’t take your eyes off him.

Thanks to Hansen’s wit, the script manages to entertain young and old alike with a clever merging of various storylines, along with contemporary references and meta-gags. Director Alison Garrigan keeps the show motoring at a sugar-rush pace, with the help of movement coach Stephanie Wilbert. And Garrigan adds her signature masks and puppetry, aided by designer Melanie Boeman.

If you haven’t sampled Talespinner yet, this is the perfect show to take your kids to see because they’ll have a blast, especially when they find out what's hiding under Rusty's top hat. And you may want to sneak back to see it again for yourself, just to make sure you caught all the jokes.

Rosalynde & the Falcon
Through April 19 at Talespinner Children’s Theatre, the Reinberger Auditorium, 5209 Detroit Avenue, 216-264-9680.

Tags: ,

We welcome readers to submit letters regarding articles and content in Cleveland Scene. Letters should be a minimum of 150 words, refer to content that has appeared on Cleveland Scene, and must include the writer's full name, address, and phone number for verification purposes. No attachments will be considered. Writers of letters selected for publication will be notified via email. Letters may be edited and shortened for space.

Email us at

Cleveland Scene works for you, and your support is essential.

Our small but mighty local team works tirelessly to bring you high-quality, uncensored news and cultural coverage of Cleveland and beyond.

Unlike many newspapers, ours is free – and we'd like to keep it that way, because we believe, now more than ever, everyone deserves access to accurate, independent coverage of their community.

Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing pledge, your support helps keep Cleveland's true free press free.

Read the Digital Print Issue

September 9, 2020

View more issues


Never miss a beat

Sign Up Now

Subscribe now to get the latest news delivered right to your inbox.


© 2020 Cleveland Scene: 737 Bolivar Rd., Suite 4100, Cleveland, OH 44115, (216) 241-7550
Logos and trademarks on this site are property of their respective owners.

Website powered by Foundation