Snake eyes

Guys and Dolls

Rated 2.0 Craps. That’s what it’s all about—the game of chance. The roll of the dice, snake eyes, seven, 11 or a hard eight: A single roll can make or break a man. And it does in Frank Loesser’s longtime musical Guys and Dolls, currently being staged at Capitol Opera Sacramento.

Unfortunately, this production too often rolls the feared snake eyes. In the past 11 years, Capitol Opera has brought some of the finest opera-based community theater to the Sacramento area. And the company’s recent move into musical theater productions has provided an exciting new opportunity for regular audiences.

However, Guys and Dolls, a production riddled with problems from the beginning, lacks the spark so critical to pull off good musical theater. Most notably awry was the casting choice of Tony Silva and counterpart Vicki Fortini, both of whom possess incredible operatic voices that don’t transfer easily into the quicker-paced musical theater style. As well, ensemble members often seemed to be competing to sing the loudest, rather than focus on harmonizing.

The production does manage to roll sevens with the perfectly cast Julie Bock as Miss Adelaide and Jimmy Folla as Nathan Detroit, and also with a show-stopping musical number by local actor Bob Eggert.

With an incredible cast and skilled production team, it’s a wonder Guys and Dolls wasn’t able to roll a perfect seven. But it’s a sure bet Capitol Opera will remain unscathed with a much anticipated production of Richard Strauss’ Salome.