The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee is F-A-N-T-A-S-T-I-C, Fantastic

The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee is a delightful musical full of many humorous and touching moments. The Austin College theatre troop did a fantastic job at bringing this entertaining and quirky musical to life. Every actor put so much effort into their characters and it was very evident in this performance.
This musical tells the story of eleven children who are all competing in their county’s spelling bee. Each of them brings their own story of what they do to prepare for the big day. The main character of this musical is Olive Ostrovsky, who starts off the musical unable to pay the entrance fee because neither of her parents is able to attend the bee.
In this rendition of the musical, there was quite a lot of audience participation. The cast brought up several audience members to participate in the spelling bee, as well as assigning them roles in the audience. We are introduced to William Barfee; a competitor from the year before who was eliminated because of his severe peanut allergy, Logainne SchwartzandGrubenierre, a very precocious eleven-year-old who is well versed in politics and pressured by her two fathers. We also meet Leaf Coneybear, a child raised by two hippies who do not understand how he made it; and Macy Park an intelligent but overworked child who is tired of winning. Finally, there is Chip Tolentino, the champion of last year’s bee. Throughout the first act, the audience receives all of the characters’ backstories and watches several rounds of the spelling bee. By the end of the first act, all the audience members had been eliminated along with Chip Tolentino.
The second act opens with a spelling montage as we see the rest of the spellers whizz through until one by one they all get eliminated. At the end of the act, only Olive and Barfee are left. Both are unsure about winning, but in the end, Barfee ends up winning.
Words truly cannot do justice to how fantastic and funny this musical was. If you could not make it to this one, be sure to attend the next musical. You don’t want to miss out on this fantastic theatre troop.

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