It Takes Two scenario with a dramatic twist

Liz Bos

Liz Bos

Blood Brothers, the latest musical at SDSU, is opening Feb. 18 at Fishback Studio Theatre in the Performing Arts Center, starring Wes Haskell, Michael Heuer and Paul Gliarmis.

The musical, which was written in the 1980s, is about twin brothers named Eddie and Mickey. They were separated at birth but became best friends despite their vastly different life circumstances.

“It’s got a style to it that you don’t see in musicals,” said Gliarmis, a sophomore theatre major who plays the narrator.

In the story, one boy, Mickey, stays with his lower-class mother and family. A wealthy woman his birth mother worked for adopts the other, Eddie. The two boys meet in childhood and become friends. They face many trials and hardships along the way but remain friends.

In addition, the characters will all be portrayed by the same actors from age seven into their 20s.

“It’s centered upon the idea that twins who are separated at birth, if they learn about each other, they will die,” said Heuer, a freshman theatre and communications major.

Although the play is a musical, it is not like a typical musical. The show has some light moments but is dramatic in tone.

“The play is very much a drama but with music,” said junior theatre major Christina Castillo, who plays Mickey’s girlfriend Linda. “It seems more real.”

Ray Peterson, director of theatre, said he had seen the show on Broadway and in London, where its popularity has kept it running for the past 25 years. He has wanted to stage it at SDSU for a long time.

“I was intrigued by the whole concept of the show,” Peterson said. “It’s an unusual theater piece because it’s not what theatergoers consider normal musical fare.”

The show has a cast of 14, with eight principal players. The story is set in Liverpool, England, spanning a time period from the late 1950s to the 1970s.

Peterson said the story has many parallels to the U.S.’s current economic situation.

“People will identify with it,” Peterson said. “It’s a meaningful piece in many ways. ? We’re producing it as it was originally intended.”

The show’s music will be important to the plot and provide much of the show’s intensity. Peterson said that the show opens with a vocally supported overture, which is not usually seen. There is a variety of music, including a children’s song that is lighter in tone and reinforces the variety of emotion in the production.

“The songs have a lot of dynamics and progress the play,” Castillo said. “Most of it helps the plot line.”

Although most of the characters’ costumes will be designed around fashions from the ’60s and ’70s, Gliarmis said that the narrator’s costumes would have more of a timeless look.

“The Narrator is responsible for the pace,” Gliarmis said. “He knows how [the story] will end. ? He gets to push the audience in the direction he wants them to go.”

One interesting aspect of the show is that the orchestra pit will be located on the roof of the main set building. This was done partly because the show usually has been staged that way and also because the show’s crew had limited space to work with.

The show opens on Feb. 18 at 7:30 p.m., with nightly performances until Feb. 21, a Feb. 22 matinee at 2 p.m. and nightly performances from Feb. 25 to 28. Due to Fishback Studio’s limited seating, attendees are urged to purchase their tickets in advance. The show does feature adult subject matter and language. Admission is free with ID for SDSU students.

“Everyone should definitely come to the show because it’s going to be awesome,” Heuer said.