Tuesday, December 01, 2015 • 05:00

Roman musical comedy opening at Welk Resort

Randall Hickman (left) and Douglas Davis (right), co-produced the show. Hickman will also be performing the starring role as Pseudolus.
March 26, 2014
Take a trip back to ancient Rome and watch "A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum," a 1960's musical comedy that tells an uproarious story that you won't find in the history books. The show will be premiering at the Welk Resort in Escondido starting March 28 through April 20.

The play is guest-produced by Vista's Broadway Theater and boasts an award-winning team of 18 cast members, including Randall Hickman as co-producer and lead actor. Hickman was the winner of the Best Featured Actor in a musical award in 2011, among numerous other accolades.

"It's very, very clever," said Doug Davis, co-producer. "It's very well written, so it's not just kind of a fluff musical where you go and there is just one excuse to get into the next musical number. There's actually a story to follow that is just fun to watch."

The story itself centers on Hickman's character, Pseudolus, a Roman slave. Pseudolus attempts to earn his freedom by helping his lovesick master woo Philia, a virgin destined for the life of a courtesan. That task, however, is never as easy as it would seem, but Pseudolus' trials and tribulations contribute to the comedy of the show.

"The show is like a big, fun vaudeville routine," said Davis of the show. "There are chase scenes and mistaken identities and all kinds of stuff. It's very well written."

Adults over forty may most understand and appreciate the show and its iconic music score, according to Davis.

"The music is famous," said Davis. "'Comedy Tonight' is probably one of the most famous – most anybody could sing that song or part of it."

The script itself is based on a novel by Burt Shevelove and Larry Gelbart, with music and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim. "A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum" first debuted on Broadway in 1962, winning several Tony Awards, including Best Musical. It was later made into a film in 1966, which won an Oscar for Best Music in Scoring of Music, Adaptation or Treatment.

However, the performance may be a rare treat for Valley Center residents, as it is an uncommon occurrence.

"The show itself doesn't get produced very often, so that in itself draws the crowd," said Davis. He expects this to contribute to the show's popularity.

Tickets are $31.50 per person with a discounted rate of $22.50 for groups of twenty or more. Tickets can be purchased through the Welk Theater Box Office at 1-800-802-7469 or online at www.welkresorts.com or www.broadwayvista.com.

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