Like real marriage, musical is a dramedy

June 14, 2007|by JULIE E. GREENE

Much like its subject matter - the life of a marriage - "I Do! I Do!" is a mixture of comedy and drama.

The musical has one song dedicated to how the marriage has changed and the spouses have discovered all the little things they once found endearing are now irritating, said Steve Steele, of Jefferson, Md.

Steele portrays the husband, Michael, in Washington County Playhouse Dinner Theatre's production of the musical created by the same team behind the long-running musical "The Fantasticks." The music is by Harvey Schmidt and the lyrics by Tom Jones (no, not Tom Jones with the gyrating hips).

The musical opened last weekend and continues through Saturday, July 21, at the downtown Hagerstown dinner theater.

"I Do! I Do!" is the story of Michael and Agnes, portrayed by Hagerstown resident Diana Gilbert, from before their wedding through quarreling, reconciling, having kids and growing old together until they move out of the house, said director Miguel A. Rivera, 33, of Hagerstown.


The musical is a bit dated as it is based on a play, "The Fourposter," that is set from 1895 to 1950, Steele said. In "I Do! I Do!" the husband works while the wife gets an allowance, runs the household and raises the baby.

"Some of the audience might find that a little hard to identify with, including me," Steele said.

But there were other parts of the musical Steele said were familiar.

Those endearing qualities that the characters later find annoying include Michael's chomping noises while he sleeps and Agnes always running late.

"My wife nags me because I snore. There's nothing I can do about it. It's a fact of life," said Steele, who will have been married for 21 years in August.

If you go ...

WHAT: "I Do! I Do!"

WHEN: Fridays and Saturdays through July 21 with doors opening at 6 p.m., dinner at 6:15 p.m. and show at 7:30 p.m. Sundays, June 24 and July 8, with doors opening at 1 p.m., dinner at 1:15 p.m. and show at 2:30 p.m.

WHERE: Washington County Playhouse Dinner Theatre, 44 N. Potomac St., downtown Hagerstown. The entrance is in back off the alley.

COST: $30 for adults; $26 for ages 62 and older and students 12 and older; $17.50 for ages 11 and younger

MORE: For tickets and more information, call 301-739-7469.

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