Any good production of “Cyrano” includes some pageantry from the 1600s, like a company of handsome French soldiers showing their spirit on parade.
(“We are the Gascony cadets…”)
Dueling swords are also a must, and in this production the action spills off the stage and into the theater’s aisles.
(zing, zing, zing, zing, “Ahhhh!”)
But most famously, there is Cyrano’s large nose. Since Cyrano is the smartest person in the play, he gets the best lines. Actor John Deaderick, as Cyrano, has lots of fun delivering dozens of colorful descriptions of this projecting proboscis and its spacious nostrils.
“Naïve – how much to view the monument? Speculative – Tell me, what’s the rent for each or both of those unfurnished flats?”
Deaderick imparts this larger-than-life character with the requisite swagger and panache. But what makes Deaderick’s performance rather special is the way he humanizes Cyrano’s deep, quiet, poetic sadness, never directly expressing his longstanding, unrequited love for the beautiful, unattainable Roxanne. This semi-professional production of “Cyrano” actually stirs the heart more effectively than some bigger, glossier versions. The show also features a large cast, abundant costumes, and some cleverly-planned staging. But it’s the genuine tug on the heartstrings that you experience during Cyrano’s death scene that makes this production stand out.
"Cyrano de Bergerac plays at the Nevada Theatre in Nevada City through February 27th.