The measure of a man and the wonder of life at Gulfshore Playhouse

If you go see “It’s a Wonderful Life: A Live Radio Play” at Gulfshore Playhouse — and if you’re a fan of the movie, you should — be sure to bring tissues or a handkerchief.

This production is just as much a tearjerker as the classic Frank Capra film: sappy, yes, but heartwarming nonetheless.

The five actors bring the entire population of Bedford Falls to life with just their voices and two tables full of Foley devices — objects that make sound effects.

The set (by Kristen Marino) is a 1940s radio station, complete with rich wood, sound dampening panels, old-fashioned microphones and two “on air” signs and two “applause” signs that light up.

If you arrive early at the theater, you’ll be treated to an improvised preshow with the actors (in character as radio actors) fiddling around onstage or mingling with the audience. And don’t miss the table in the lobby, with maybe half-dozen sound effects you can try out yourself. (For example, you can make the sound of rain by pouring uncooked rice grains into a metal can.)

Nancy Stetson, Florida Weekly

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