VALLEY OF LIGHT at the Hollywood Fringe Festival #hff23

Reviewed by Eloise Coopersmith

VALLEY OF LIGHT presented at the Broadwater Main Stage by Fables and Rumors, invites audiences to delve into a deconstructed hero’s journey. Written, composed, and directed by the talented Naomi Melville, the production draws inspiration from folklore and mythology, aiming to provoke introspection on personal values and priorities. Melville’s program notes emphasize her desire for viewers to leave the theater inspired, hopeful, and with a renewed appreciation for life’s simple pleasures and the relationships that matter most.

With a unique blend of pop opera and folk alternative, the musical score becomes a storytelling tool, intertwining indie sensibilities as it weaves its narrative tapestry. The diverse cast earnestly strives to convey Melville’s vision, wholeheartedly embracing the traditions of storytelling to transport the audience into a realm of “new world mythology.”

The cast of Naomi Melville’s, VALLEY OF LIGHT at the 2023 Hollywood Fringe Festival

This play is a bit “volume” challenging.  The piano and other elements overpowered the actors much of the time and it was pretty hard to hear.  

Nevertheless, the genuine effort and unwavering commitment of the cast to bring Melville’s creative vision to life are truly commendable. VALLEY OF LIGHT serves as a reminder of the power of music and storytelling and in its desire to convey profound messages and forge connections with the audience.

The show is a testament to the creative vision of Naomi Melville. The production’s willingness to embrace a unique musical style and its commitment to delivering the author’s message contribute to its overall impact, leaving room for contemplation and consideration of this complex work.

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