They are timeless. They are flawless. They are beautiful. They are Phantasmagoria! Spinning a spellbinding web of literary genius with unparalleled theatrical flair, the band of Steampunk gypsies storm Mandell Theater at Lowndes Shakespeare Center throughout the month of October. This is the seventh installment of artfully-enhanced horror from the troupe. With their infectious techniques becoming more and more a part of Orlando’s widespread autumnal culture, perhaps it should rightfully be known as “Phantober”.
The show begins with a glorious montage in tribute to a noticeably absent Pandora, a cornerstone character portrayed by the incredibly gifted Gina Makarova (who has taken hiatus from Phantasmagoria for continuing educational pursuits). From this opening moment, it is undeniably implied that this is a family and you are now a part. The nuances reverberate throughout the performance, to reunite those in the audience who have already been adopted by the group, as the newcomers are embraced in an instant. The up close and personal intimacy of a Phantasmagoria performance is as literal as it is figurative.
Phantasmagoria VII: The Cards They Are Dealt delves deeper into classical masterpieces than ever before. Delivering stories beyond the mainstream from the likes of Oscar Wilde, H.P. Lovecraft, Ambrose Bierce, M.R. James, and Edgar Allen Poe, Phantasmagoria breathes fresh life into ageless tales… easily their most delightfully dark offerings to date. The continuing story of our beloved troupe intertwines gracefully with the immortal narratives they convey, themed around the driving motif of the tarot.
From start to finish, The Cards They Are Dealt harvests high-energy performance with divergent contributions displaying the varied, unique skills of the individual players. Stopgap demonstrations of aerial feats, sword fighting, and fanciful dance propel the whole of the story, uniting the blend of the literary and theatrical worlds that Phantasmagoria so brilliantly melds, packaged with enviable confidence and raw emotion.
Usher in the season of spooktacular in a whimsical way by adding a Phantasmagoria performance to your must-do list. Tickets are still available for the remainder of the month, scheduled for October 24, 28, 29, 30, 31 (their 100th show). Priced at $25 ($15 for students, seniors, and military), it’s a small investment for an evening so rich in culture and class. Don’t miss the VIP post-show performance featuring belly dancing and fire dancing – just a $10 add-on to your General Admission ticket. Purchase your tickets on-site, or online in advance at http://www.orlandoatplay.com/. For more information on Phantasmagoria, visit their website, or follow them on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram! See our full photo spread from Phantasmagoria VII: The Cards They Are Dealt here.