NoHo Theatre Review: “Camp Ragnarok” at Theatre Unleashed playing through September 9.
Theatre Unleashed is truly breaking new ground with its latest production.
An episodic play set over six weeks with a new episode every week, “Camp Ragnarok” is a comedic, drama-filled romp through the woods, with a cast of disparate and sometimes desperate characters. A group of survivalist wannabes is led by their inept camp leader on a trip in the countryside. He, of course, has reasons of his own to wander the wilderness, none of which bode well for the hapless group, each of whom has obvious baggage of their own.
Imagine “The Blair Witch Project” without the witches, the darkness and with more laughs and you come close to the antics of “Camp Ragnarok.”
It’s a fascinating soapy examination of what pressure can do to the weak and ill prepared. Populated with characters straight out of a telenovela all vying for control of the story and plotting against each other, it reminds me of the last time I watched a senate debate.
I am never disappointed with the fierce innovation developed at Theatre Unleashed and “Camp Ragnarok” is yet another example of their joyous nerve. Indeed, the actors themselves must be gluttons for punishment as they perform a new episode each week written by a group of Theatre Unleashed company writers who must revel in the opportunity to take us all on this journey, filled with both the sublime and the ridiculous. Loved it!
There is always a little madness up in The Belfry, and “Camp Ragnarok” is perfectly mad and wonderfully hilarious. Suspend your disbelief at the foot of the Belfry stairs and prepare to be thoroughly entertained. This kind of groan-filled humor can only be pulled off by the most dedicated and fearless of actors and, as usual, Theatre Unleashed has them in spades.
I highly recommend “Camp Ragnarok.” Each week is another chance to follow these warped and delightful characters to their ultimate and intriguing ends…
Written by Cesar Abella, Matthew Brunhofer, CJ Hoke & Lisa K. Wyatt
Directed by Carey Matthews
Andy Justus, Cyanne McClairian, Amanda Rae Troist, Heather Lynn, Libby Letlow, Graydon Schlichter, Jennifer Ashe, Madeleine Miller, Gordon Martin Meacham
Beth Scorzato – Stage Manger
Gregory Crafts – Lighting
Graydon Schlichter – Sound
Ann Hurd – Producer, Scenic Designer
CJ Koke – Producer
Theatre Unleashed, 11031 Camarillo St., North Hollywood, 91602
August 4- September 9 – Fridays and Saturdays 8PM http://www.theatreunleashed.org