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Princeton’s Triangle Show TREES COMPANY, forest’s a crowd – Review

PU's bonfire followed by Princeton Triangle Club's performance at McCarter.

My husband and I headed into town last night after dinner for the Princeton Triangle Club’s production TREES COMPANY, forest’s a crowd at McCarter Theatre. We had a good 40 minutes to kill after parking, and our intention was to walk around town for a bit. We decided to walk through the campus and stumbled upon the bonfire celebration. It tied the entire evening together.

We heard speeches and the band play, then witnessed the bonfire. As the crowd cheered off and on, we realized it was time to head back to the theater. We passed by the kettle corn stand, and a server insisted we each take a free bag. After munching on some still warm popcorn, we arrived and took our seats. Only one-third of the seats were filled and it was 7:55 PM. Show time was at 8:00. People continued to take their seats, some with bags of kettle corn, and we realized we were just ahead of the bonfire crowd. The performance began 18 minutes late to accommodate the full house.

This was my first Triangle Club performance. Can you believe it? After 11 years of living in Princeton, I finally made it to see a Triangle show! I was very impressed when I read in theTribill that the undergrads pretty much put together this production with the exception being professionally directed and designed, and they’ve been carrying on this tradition for 122 years. I also read that they’re the oldest musical comedy troupe in the country. Amazing!

This year’s theme was nature. They were able to put together 25 musical sketches relating to this topic with one intermission to make you laugh out loud. I can’t tell you much about them without giving much away, but I can tell you that my favorite was about a couple looking to buy a house next to a babbling brook. The show nears the end with its traditional all-male kickline.

The audience also played a slight role in the performance, since some knew the actors, and were occasionally shouting out to them. Of course, this fueled the laughter even more. For a moment, I felt like I was back in college with my friends, not afraid to laugh my head off about silly comedy. Their sketches reminded me a bit of some SNL’s Digital Shorts.

I must warn parents with younger children. There are a number of scenes with adult humor, after all, these are (mostly male) undergrads writing the material. I recommend 14 and older, but use your own discretion.

The troupe will perform today, November 18th at 2 PM, then they’ll go on tour January – February 2013 hitting New York, Cincinnati, St. Louis, Nashville and Washington DC, before returning on May 31 and June 1, 2013 for reunion encore performances. Tickets are $25, $30, and $50. Student tickets are only $10 (use discount code: STUTIX). You can charge tickets by phone at the McCarter Ticket Office (609) 258-2787, or order online atMcCarter Theatre.

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