Based on The Fourposter by Jan De Hartog
Book & Lyrics by Tom Jones
Music by Harvey Schmidt
Directed by Chuck Gessert
Musical Direction by William A. Underwood
Choreographed by Linda Fortunato
At the Theatre At The Center
Charming, warmhearted musical about 50 years of marriage is a winner
I Do! I Do! is the 1966 musical by Schmidt & Jones (The Fantasticks) that was a star vehicle for Mary Martin and Robert Preston, it ran for 560 Broadway performances. Based on Jan de Hartog’s play, The Fourposter, the two person musical chronicles the 50 year marriage of Agnes and Michael Snow from 1898 until 1948.
Local Chicago favorites, Bernie Yvon and Heidi Kettenring deftly present this sweet, charming and honest musical look at the cycles of marriage. Filled with clever lyrics by Tom Jones upon Harvey Schmidt’s varied music, I do! I do! is fine entertainment. I Do! is a tough show because both actors must have strong voices together with enough acting skills to be believable. Yvon and Kettenring have that plus terrific stage chemistry. We quickly love both and we enjoy their 50 year journey. Agnes is a pure Victorian wife who does the housework and raises their two children. Michael is the male chauvinist novelist with a large ego and a commanding nature. Love is their bond. A large fourposter bed is the apt symbol for marriage.
Schmidt & Jones’ score chronicles the trials and tribulations, the laughs and sorrows as well as the hopes and disappointments ripe in a 50 year marriage. Songs like “I Love My Wife,” “Nobody’s Perfect ” and “It’s A Well Know Fact” poke fun at and explore the truisms of 20th Century marriage. The wonderful “My Cup Runneth Over” love song was movingly sung by Yvon and Kettenring.
We see the Snow’s age gracefully as they struggle for purpose after their children get married and as old age creeps upon them. I Do! I Do! is an ode to all those eternal marriages so dominant in the 20th Century. Filled with humor, a fine score and two delightful characters, I Do! I Do! is an intimate, nostalgic show. William A. Underwood and Randy Glancy have their pianos sizzling while Bernie Yvon and Heidi Kettenring land their songs with gusto and loads of honesty.
At the Theatre At The Center, 1040 Ridge Road, Munster, IN, call 219-836-3255, www.theatreatthecenter.com, tickets $2- -$40, Wednesdays at 2 pm, Thursdays at2 & 7:30 pm, Fridays at 8 pm, Saturdays at 2:30 & 8 pm, Sundays at 2:30 pm, running time is 2 hours, 15 minutes with intermission.