Drama Review: The Wedding Singer


The opening scenes of Diamond Bar High School Drama’s virtual spring musical “The Wedding Singer” started off on a steady note. However, as soon as the connection on my end crashed, causing me to miss a good portion of the first musical number, and lagged even when it reconnected, I knew that following this live-streamed musical was going to be a bumpy ride, even despite the apparent efforts of its cast.
“The Wedding Singer” is the story of Robbie Hart, a wedding singer and a die-hard romantic who is abandoned by his fiance. When he’s hired to sing at the wedding of another woman, Julia, he falls in love and tries to win her heart before she marries another man.
I attended the showing featuring the gold cast, which starred Alyssa Guerra as Julia Sullivan, and Gavin Prudencio as Robbie Hart. The show is a musical reenactment of the 1998 romantic comedy film, with fewer rock elements and a more wholesome comedy routine.
Right from the start, the stock image backdrops and uneven audio mixing distracted from the performance itself, especially when it came to their amazing musical numbers. Whenever the backing vocalists sang together, it largely overpowered the main singer, and the vocal discord from lag was so cacophonous that I found myself removing my earbuds several times throughout each group piece.
In addition, many characters’ exits and entrances caused great confusion due to the odd timing of the fade in and fade out transitions that were used to bring actors onto the scene. Often, the performers were removed before they had even finished their lines.
Holding a live performance to keep the experience as authentic as possible is understandable, but considering the obvious technical deficiencies and potential for disruption, as well as the price of admission ($18.07), a prerecorded showing of the musical would have greatly improved not only the viewing experience but the performance itself. It could have enabled better transitions and backdrops, as well as mixed vocals, which would have better displayed the efforts of everyone on Drama, who clearly worked hard to put the show together.

Despite the technical imperfections and the initial crudeness of the performance, the cast members began executing their parts as the production continued on with surprising familiarity and a conviction that would have been made rather hard, given the circumstances they had to practice and perform under.
Furthermore, Guerra and Prudencio’s dialogues as their respective characters were flawless, especially the musical number in which Robbie, with the help of Julia, writes a song for Linda. Only when the backup vocalists came on to do a group number was I reminded of the audio-visual imperfections that came with this virtual musical.
Given the circumstances and technical difficulties, the effort put into the rehearsals and bringing the story to life could clearly be seen throughout the play, and definitely made it much more enjoyable and entertaining to watch.