REVIEW: RHS Theatre Company’s Little Shop of Horrors

Come out and support Roseville High School Theatre Company performing Little Shop of Horrors as their Spring Musical and you’ll get a glimpse of how talented and diverse Roseville High School really is.

Last night I had the pleasure of attending their opening night and it had me feeling ‘full’ by the time I left.

Little Shop of Horrors is a lot to live up to for first year drama teacher and director at RHS Jennifer Saigeon. Former drama teacher and director Ashley White set the bar pretty high and this show met those standards.

Audrey II (the plants), the focus of a recent A&E feature, rented from Intermission Productions of Tracy California, cost the company $1,200 for three weeks and $300 for each additional week of rehearsal.


Needless to say, they are stunning. Ethan Jones, the junior behind the two of the four plant props, had me convinced junior Annabelle Tiznado, the voice of Audrey II, was in the plant herself.

It may seem like no big deal from the house, but according to Jones the plant is heavy, hot, and pitch black.

The plant’s movements syncing with Tiznado’s voice and inflection is one of the biggest feats of the production.

Not to mention that Tiznado took on a (commonly) male role and spun it around a whole 360 degrees and made it her own.

Matthew Robinson who, plays Orin, the dentist, fit the role well and had me engrossed in his character’s gross personality. His leather riding costume was well put together and only added to the abusive boyfriend and mentally deranged dentist type. The dentist’s office props, again rented from Intermission Productions, were also a nice touch.

Seymour is played by senior Douglas Pomin who is a perfect fit for this role. His real life outgoing personality transforms into this shy character afraid of his own creation, running after Audrey.

Both of their voices are strong enough to carry their songs, no doubt assisted by their vocal coach Dani Leinwander who I hope continues to work with RHSTCo. But, only when you could hear them. Their mics either were positioned oddly like Seymour’s, placed awkwardly on his collar which produced a terrible sound every time his neck or one of his costume pieces rubbed against it.

(UPDATE: From what I understand, these issues have been fixed in the shows following the one I attended.)

Or seemed to be off or tuned very low which allowed the music to mute their voices at times making it difficult to hear.


Audrey II’s voice had the exact opposite issue, when Audrey II first flexes it’s singing voice in Git It! the volume was piercingly loud.

Seymour’s connection with Audrey is perfectly represented both before and after Orin’s ‘disappearance’. The awkward tension between the two could be felt throughout the room, inciting laughter from the unusually rather small audience which I attributed to it being a Thursday night performance.

Audrey is played by senior AJ Welker, who has previously played many supporting roles and leads at RHS like Marcy Park in The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, Marty in Grease and Glory in Almost Maine. Welker had me hooting and hollering with every note. Her belts were awe-inducing.

While Audrey as a character has big heels to fill, Welker fits wholly.

Senior John Wallasch, a magnificent pick for Mr. Mushnik, plays a spectacular show of ‘old grumpy man’ and ‘dead, old grumpy man’. Unfortunately he suffers from the same doubts of technical issues that Seymour and Orin do. It was oftentimes difficult to hear his voice.

Overall the blocking and choreography was subtle, the way it should be in a show like this, and made sense outside of the few times it seems like doors and walls were forgotten about.

The Urchins had a strong, understated presence and only added to the 60’s style and swing of things when they were on stage instead of being distracting like I see many times with background dancers and vocalists.

Much like Audrey II, I went into the theatre that night hungry and left stuffed in the best way, maybe even wanting seconds.

You have five more opportunities to see this show: tonight, March 29th at 7:00 p.m, March 30th at 2:00p.m and April 4, 5 and 6 at 7:00p.m.