Review: Alice in Wonderland at Falcon’s Eye Theatre

Alice in Wonderland

What’s this key for? Unlocking your mind … and also a door, probably.

What’s this key for? Unlocking your mind … and also a door, probably.

Photo courtesy of CMYK Photography

Showtimes: Fri 7:30pm, Sat 7:30pm, Sun 2pm. Through 5/12; $12-$20; Falcon’s Eye Theatre, Stage Two at the Harris Center, 10 College Parkway in Folsom, (916) 608-6888,
Rated 3.0

Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland has always been a series of bizarre events. The Disney animated version of Alice in Wonderland made it kid-cool with the cute White Rabbit, the funny Mad Hatter and the mysterious Cheshire Cat.

Then Jefferson Airplane recorded the 1967 hit White Rabbit that spotlighted the story’s subtle drug references and psychedelic trippiness as Alice eats cookies and mushrooms that make her shrink and grow.

Falcon’s Eye Theater has chosen the more hallucinogenic version for its adaptation, with creative production elements that include original music compositions, animated shadow puppets and video technology that shows Alice plunging down the rabbit hole and flying on a space ship.

Though this decision to make Alice a swirling imaginative stew is quite mesmerizing at times, it does greatly sacrifice the plot so the production comes across as a series of non-sequitur, eccentric vignettes instead of a cohesive story. And though there’s nothing provocative, it may prove confusing and frustrating for traditionalists and Disney-aged audience members.

The large cast consists of 30 performers and more than a dozen non-human animated characters. Kylie Adams is most impressive as Alice—who must juggle portraying a young girl while interacting with puppets, animation, video imagery and shifting props and sets. The actors and production crew work as a team—all producing a hypnotic trip down the rabbit hole.