Review: JEKYLL AND HYDE is hauntingly beautiful

by Jody Key – Managing Editor 10/28/2019

Just in time for trick-or-treat, Atlanta Lyric Theater presents the disturbing tale of one Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, loosely based on the novella The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde by Robert Lewis Stevenson. In this musical adaptation by Frank Wildhorn and Leslie Bricusse, JEKYLL AND HYDE tells the tale of the well-intentioned Dr. Jekyll, a scientist who pondered the realm of madness, good, and evil, and concocted a potion which he believed would eradicate human evil from the world. Unable to convince the board of St. Jude’s hospital in London to allow him to carry out his experiments on humans, Dr. Jekyll decides to use himself as a test subject. What follows next is a case of dual personality, as the person of Mr. Hyde emerges and goes on a killing rampage mainly targeted at the board of directors of the hospital. Parallel to this gruesome plot is Jekyll’s love story with his fiance, Emma and Hyde’s obsession with a Lucy, a woman of ill repute.

The Lyric has created a marvelous monster of a show, complete with an elaborate set, beautiful costumes, breathtaking vocals, and stunning visual images. From the moment the curtain rises on Act I, to the time it falls after Act II, this gorgeous show enthralls audience members, all the while drawing them into the madness from within. Kudos to Director Heidi Cline McKerley and the entire talented team which includes musical direction by Paul Tate, choreography by Bubba Carr, scenic design by Lee Shiver-Cerone, costume design by Amanda Edgerton West, lighting design by Ben Rawson, and sound design by Adam Davila. This crew worked together to make this show flow seamlessly in technical execution. In addition, the cast assembled for this show is the crème de la crème  in Atlanta theater.

Chase Peacock’s performance as Jekyll/Hyde is outstanding. The role is larger than life, with incredibly demanding vocals and physicality, and Peacock proves his range as a performer knows no bounds.

Chase Peacock as Jekyll/Hyde

This show is also graced with two incredible female leads. Maggie Salley in her Lyric debut portrays Emma. Maggie has been in the ATL wowing audiences with Wallace Buice Theatre Company and Theatre Buford, and now Lyric patrons have the opportunity to be mesmerized by her stunning talent. Equally as talented is Niki Badua as Lucy, also in her Lyric Debut. She’s been seen most recently at Actor’s Express and Serenbe Playhouse, and Lyric patrons are in for a treat. Niki commands the stage in numbers like “Someone Like You” and “A New Life”. Apart the two women are amazing, and eventually their stellar voices harmonize and blend beautifully together in the haunting showstopper “In His Eyes”.

Maggie Salley as Emma
Niki Badua as Lucy

Other KeyNoteworthy performances include the incomparable Jeff McKerley as Danvers, Lamont J. Hill as Utterson, Ben Fierke as spider, and Jaymyria Etienne as Lady Beaconsfield. The entire ensemble adorns and compliments the show with expert execution, and adds significant vocal and visual texture throughout.

JEKYLL AND HYDE is overall a frighteningly gorgeous telling of a classic tale. It plays a the Lyric until November 3rd, so get your tickets ASAP at https://atlantalyrictheatre.com/show/jekyll-hyde/ .

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