5 questions with director Nino Casisi, hours before opening night of the Blue Springs City Theatre production of "BIG: The Musical."
When frustrated adolescent Josh Baskin is sick of being an awkward kid, he wishes he were “big” at the local carnival and wakes up the next morning a 30-year-old man. He discovers there’s much more to being an adult than he’d bargained for – and learns we must all grow up at our own pace, in our own time.
Written by David Shire, Richard Maltby Jr. and John Weidman, this show is based on the 1988 movie starring Tom Hanks and written by Gary Ross and Anne Spielberg.
Courtesy of www.bluespringscitytheatre.com
Q: Why this show?
I’ve had it in my collection of CDs for the longest time, and I said “I think I’m gonna apply with this,” and I got it. (The board) listened to it and said, “We have to do this.” It’s the first time it’s been in the metro. It’s almost 20 years old, and no one’s ever tackled it. It’s been a dream come true; it’s the movie come alive on stage.
Q: What’s been the hardest thing about putting this show together?
The set changes are probably the most tedious part of the show, but we got that down to a T. They go to all these places. Probably the hardest thing was the scenic design.
Q: What’s been the most rewarding aspect of this show?
Opening night. Getting here, getting to the final product for the first time – it’s gonna be amazing. (People) are going to remember the movie, bringing the movie to life on stage is a hard thing.
Q: Who has the most difficult role in the cast?
Probably older Josh, because he has to depict a 13-year-old trapped in a 30-year-old body. His hardest part was trying to maintain that naivety of being a 13-year-old while acting 30, and he does a really good balance of it. Like when he’s in a board room and acting childish, that’s where he hasn’t crossed that line.
Mrs. Baskin is a difficult role because she’s dealing with the loss of her child, and she doesn’t know what’s happened. Ironically, her son plays young Josh in the show.
Q: For anyone who’s seen the Tom Hanks movie, what is the biggest or perhaps unexpected difference between that and this show?
Probably the fact there’s just music in it. The only music in the movie is the score, plus the piano playing when they play the foot piano. People are gonna go “Whoa – you can put a song in the middle of this, and it makes sense.”