St. Lou Fringe Review: Song for Vanya

Song for Vanya has been highly anticipated since it’s announcement one year ago at the 2016 Fringe Fest. Headlining as the festival’s national act, the production team has been working over time to bring this classic story to the Grandel stage. With powerful songs, smooth melodies, and intense dialogue, this work in progress is well on it’s way to a Broadway Premiere!

A Song for Vanya is a musical adaptation of Uncle Vanya, the tragicomedy by Russian playwright Anton Chekhov – first published in 1899. The setting is a provincial Russian estate, where the quiet lives of the inhabitants are disrupted when the head of the family brings home his beautiful new wife. Instrumentation for this musical includes twenty-eight songs set in various combinations for cello, piano, clarinet, and the eight characters.

Although not a “lead” role, Jeanitta Perkins portrayal of Sonia was absolutely riveting. The way she delivers the power of her character’s strength yet the vulnerability definitely adds to the amazing and classic story. And while all of the actors carried their character well, I found myself truly mesmerized by her performance.

The show is directed by Matthew Kerns and he has done an amazing job leading the cast in this workshop experience. Speaking of the cast, WOW! The power in their lyrics and dialogue have the potential to bring tears, laughter, and rage. Knowing that this show is literally a work in progress, it’s exciting to know that we have been a part of the process that will hopefully make this a Broadway Hit.

As the show move past the festival and continue perfecting the show, they rely on the feedback received during these performances. So please take a moment and visit the St. Lou Fringe website and complete the survey. This survey is essential to the further development of this project.


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