Tag: Paul Kieve

Review: Finding Neverland (Broadway in Chicago)

Finding Neverland cast, Broadway Chicago (photo Carol Rosegg)           
         

Finding Neverland

By James Graham (book), and
 Gary Barlow, Eliot Kennedy (music, lyrics) 
Cadillac Palace Theatre, 151 W. Randolph (map)
thru Dec 4  |  tix: $34-$115  |  more info
       
Check for half-price tickets   
     

November 29, 2016 | 0 Comments More

Review: Matilda the Musical (Broadway in Chicago)

Matilda

Mia Sinclair Jenness
Bryce Ryness

 Jenness, and Ryness will be joined by fellow principal cast members Jennifer Blood (Miss Honey), Quinn Mattfeld (Mr. Wormwood) and Cassie Silva (Mrs. Wormwood).

The ensemble will include Cal Alexander, Kayla Amistad, Cameron Burke, Brittany Conigatti, Michael Fatica, Wesley Faucher, John Michael Fiumara, Camden Gonzales, Shonica Gooden, Evan Gray, Cassidy Hagel, Meliki Hurd, Michael D. Jablonski, Luke Kolbe Mannikus, Stephanie Martignetti, Megan McGuff, Ora Jones, Justin Packard, Serena Quadrato, Aristotle Rock, Jaquez Andre Sims, Ian Michael Stuart, Danny Tieger, Kaci Walfall, Natalie Wisdom and Darius Wright.         
   
        
Matilda the Musical

By Tim Minchin (music & lyrics) 
    and Dennis Kelly (book)
Based on the novel by Roald Dahl
Oriental Theatre, 24 W. Randolph (map)
thru Apr 10  |  tix: $33-$90  |  more info
       
Check for half-price tickets   
    

April 2, 2016 | 0 Comments More

Review: The Phantom of the Opera (Broadway in Chicago)

Cooper Grodin and Julia Udine star in Broadway in Chicago's "Phantom of the Opera," directed by Laurence Connor. (phtoo credit: Matthew Murphy)        
      
The Phantom of the Opera

Written by Andrew Lloyd Webber (music),
  Charles Hart (lyrics), Richard Stilgoe (book)
Directed by Laurence Connor
Cadillac Palace Theatre, 151 W. Randolph (map)
thru March 2  |  tickets: $25-$115   |  more info
       
Check for half-price tickets 
    
        
                   Read review
     

January 20, 2014 | 0 Comments More

Review: Ghost the Musical (Broadway in Chicago)

Steven Grant Douglas and Katie Postotnik star as Sam Wheat and Molly Jenson in Broadway in Chicago's "Ghost the Musical," directed by Matthew Warchus. (photo credit: Joan Marcus)        
      
Ghost the Musical

By Bruce Joel Rubin, Dave Stewart & Glen Ballard
Directed by Matthew Warchus
at Oriental Theatre, 24 W. Randolph (map)
thru Jan 19  |  tickets‘: $27-$95   |  more info
       
Check for half-price tickets 
    
        
                   Read review
     

January 15, 2014 | 0 Comments More

Review: Peter Pan (360 Entertainment & Broadway Chicago)

Now extended through Aug 21st!!


A gorgeous, high-tech canvas of oohs and ahhs

 

 

Emily Yetter (Tinkerbell), Scott Weston (Michael Darling), Ciaran Joyce (Peter Pan), Evelyn Hoskins (Wendy Darling) and Tom Larkin (John Darling) fly off to Neverland in a scene from "Peter Pan". Photo by Kevin Berne

threesixty entertainment presents
Peter Pan
Written by Sir James Barrie
adapted by Tanya Ronder
Directed by Ben Harrison
at Chicago Tribune Freedom Center, 650 W. Chicago (map)
through July 10 Aug 21  |  tickets: $20-$125  |  more info

Reviewed by Lawrence Bommer

It’s a gorgeous marriage of a circus tent, whose interior functions like a thrilling Omnimax screen in-the-round, and traditional theater magic, with trap doors and soaring flights that are more than fancy. This British-born production from 2009, which has already delighted Kensington Gardens and San Francisco, should have a happy home in Chicago all summer.

Wendy (Evelyn Hoskins) receives a gift from Peter Pan (Ciaran Joyce). Photo by Kevin BerneIts in-the-found “panto” spectacle flourishes in a huge white tent pitched in the parking lot of the Chicago Tribune’s printing plant along the Chicago River. There the two and a half hour spectacle regales audiences with glorious 3D and 360-degree projections that, sweeping us along, let us fly above London, explore the jungles of Neverland, dive under the waters around Skull Island, soar to the riggings of Captain Hook’s ship, and tumble through the clouds, accompanied by Peter, Michael, John and Wendy as, harnessed to the apex of the big top, they fly effortlessly above us.

The story they tell, of course, is J.M. Barrie’s inexhaustible novella of the boy who never grew up and the lucky children (including the audience) who get caught up in his adventures with pirates, a crocodile, mermaids and, his greatest adversary, time itself. Peter’s saga inevitably takes us back to our childhood and, just as importantly, reminds us why we had to leave it.

Inspired by the doomed Davies brothers, Barrie wrote a Dorian Gray-like fantasy in which one of the beautiful boys would never age. Peter, a once-and-future serial abductor, recruits Wendy, his latest surrogate “mother,” along with her entranced brothers, to fly with him to Neverland and tell bedtime stories to the lost boys. But Captain Hook, a stunted adult who is just as lost, also wants a mother and will poison Peter and kill the boys to get Wendy.

At the same time playing at being grownups wears thin and Wendy, Michael, John and the orphan lads slowly feel the need to return to reality. For Peter “death would be an awfully big adventure.” For them life is challenge enough.

Faithful to every delightful word in Barrie’s source, Tanya Ronder’s adaptation, abetted by a serviceable score by Benjamin Wallfisch, employs wonderful puppets (the crocodile is every bit as big as its living relatives), highwire flying, swirling swordfights, a superb video backdrop and the audience’s own unleashed imagination to do full justice to this childhood classic.

Peter Pan (Ciaran Joyce) shows Wendy (Evelyn Hoskins) how to fly in "Peter Pan". Photo by Kevin Berne Tinkerbell (Emily Yetter) and Peter Pan (Ciaran Joyce) fly off above London back to Neverland. Photo by Kevin Berne
Peter Pan (Ciaran Joyce) flies into the Darling family bedroom . Photo by Kevin Berne. Tinkerbell (Emily Yetter) flies above the audience. Photo by Kevin Berne.

Ciaran Joyce, a supple young British actor, makes Peter properly improper as he impetuously bursts from one adventure to another, as if boyhood had no expiration date (and he’s willed it so just to be sure). Just as exuberant but strategically maternal as required, Evelyn Hoskins is a very sensible Wendy, her prudence a counterweight to Peter’s other “girls,” Emily Yetter’s bratty and endearing Tinker Bell and Heidi Bueller’s curiously sensual Tiger Lily. Playing the most threatening (and thus mockable) adults, Steven Pacey is suitably silly, especially in his unseemly popularity competition for Peter. (Guess who gets voted off of this island?)

Lovely touches abound, like the Lost Boys’ indulging in a curious war dance about “killing grownups,” the mother-like puppet Neverbird (animated appropriately by Regina Leslie as Mrs. Darling), and a mermaid duo who try to kidnap Wendy for their own underwater purposes.

When the audience shouts out how much they believe In fairies, you sense the same splendid stagecraft that worked so well in 1904. But here state-of-the-art, cutting-edge technology makes it even larger than life and as vibrant a fantasy as memory could make it.

Rating: ★★★★

The pirates of Peter Pan, with Wendy (Evelyn Hoskins) in the background. Photo by Kevin Berne

Peter Pan continues at the Chicago Tribune Freedom Center, 650 W. Chicago Ave., through summer 2011, with performances Wednesdays @ 2:00pm & 7:00pm; Thursdays-Fridays @ 7:00pm; Saturdays @ 2:00pm & 7:00pm and Sundays @ 1:00pm & 5:00pm. Tickets range from $20-$125, Complete ticket info here.

All photos by Kevin Berne

May 6, 2011 | 1 Comment More