One of the greatest experiences a theater-goer can have in their life, is to be one of the first to witness a show. This was an experience I got to live as I saw the opening night production of the Illusion Theater’s A Night in Olympus. I was excited to see the show, but wasn’t expecting much more than some one-liners and a few catchy tunes. I thought I was going to see just a fun production, but I was given a Titan of a show, leaving me pleasantly…Continue
Second only to New York when it comes to theatre seats per capita, it’s no wonder that every year dozens of shows make their world premier in the Twin Cities. Joining these show this season is A Night in Olympus, with a book by Jeffrey Hatcher and Bill Corbett and lyrics and music by Chan Poling.
A Night in Olympus is the story of shy and geeky high schooler, Maggie and her zombie loving best friend, Harry. Much to the…Continue
Whether it’s good or bad, prom is always memorable...even out in the middle of nowhere. In fact, that’s where interesting things like learning the faculty are actually gods happen. A Night in Olympus, written by Jeff Hatcher and Bill Corbett, is the story of a teenage girl who wants her dream night at prom. She learns that her teacher is actually the goddess Venus, who gives her the beauty to go to prom. And that’s where things go awry. It’s the age…Continue
Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat
The Narrator and the Boring Dull Chorus
Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat has held a special place in the hearts of many people throughout the last few decades. The 2016 National Tour exhibited that Joseph is a dying musical. It plays at the Orpheum Theatre in Minneapolis until April 3rd. Though an inexperienced theatre-goer may enjoy it (your 7…Continue
Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat is a throwback to one of Andrew Lloyd Webber’s first works. I thoroughly enjoyed the music and was impressed by the innovative approach on the show, but it got kind of strange. Visually, Joseph was fun to look at…until I…Continue
Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat was first produced in 1970 and features the music of famed composer Andrew Lloyd Webber. The musical is based on the story of “Joseph and the coat of many colors” from the first book of the bible Genesis.
Despite being overwhelmingly stuffed from start to finish with elaborate digital effects, bright colored lights, whimsical costumes and acrobatic dance numbers, the show felt like it was…Continue
A clash of electric guitar, a flash of strobes, the story faded into darkness. There are a few instances in which cocktail dresses are not preferred over other forms of fabric. Funerals for instance, or job interviews, or perhaps a performance of a biblical-original story. Hey, I am all for cocktail dresses, give me a short hemline and a martini and I’m your girl, but maybe not during Joseph. Sure, I’m a traditionalist when it comes to theater. The…Continue
They say ignorance is bliss. For me, ignorance was a good thing after seeing Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat. Even though it’s one of composer Andrew Lloyd Webber’s more well known pieces, I’d never before seen the show or knew much about it. As I left the theater, I heard murmurs of discussion, namely one person who stated that their favorite show had just been “ruined”. Now, Joseph wasn’t the best show…Continue
What if I never saw this show? Then, I would have missed out on laughs, tears, and overall enjoyment. Minneapolis was one of the many stops on the If/Then tour, and I was fortunate enough to catch one of the shows. Liz leads an impulsive life filled with love and death, while Beth leads a practical life stuffed with career advancements and loneliness. Both lives occur parallel and to the same person, and in the pair, Liz and Beth always find their one true love. As the audience we…Continue
If/Then paints a vivid picture in its run at the Orpheum until March 13th. With music by Tom Kitt and book and lyrics by Brian Yorkey, If/Then is about Elizabeth, played brilliantly by Jackie Burns who, after divorce, moves to New York City and is torn between choosing to live her life as Liz; searching for new adventure, or Beth; beginning her journey making professional associations. If/Then is a contemporary piece that relates well to our…Continue
Burning Crossroads in If/Then
Jackie Burns may be the best touring actress there has ever been. On Broadway, Burns acted as the understudy for Idina Menzel in the leading role of If/Then. During the Broadway run, Burns played the role nearly 50 times, then took over the role for the first National Tour. Her ease and experience shows through her singing and connection to the character for the full duration of the show. She also…Continue
If/Then is a modern, fast paced, and emotionally charged musical. Every aspect of this show was both beautiful and thought provoking, creating the stunning amalgamation that is playing now at the Orpheum theatre in Minneapolis.
This show follows the potential life stories of Elizabeth, emphasizing how different life could be due to a single decision. Her big decision occurs in a park, and she has to decide what kind of person she wants to be. Whether she decides to spend time…
A common complaint among theatergoers is that there are no “original” musicals, or musicals that aren’t based off of already-existing books, movies, or songs. If/Then, a moving, witty, and very modern show, seems to be the answer to their pleas.
Not to say that If/Then isn’t inspired by the shows that came before it. The story traces two different possible paths the life of protagonist Elizabeth (Jackie Burns) could have taken, one where she focuses on romance, and…Continue
I walked in to the Orpheum theatre on the opening night of Broadway musical “If/Then” expecting a simple love story with an Idina Menzel look-alike struggling to fill the diva’s shoes who originated the role. I left the theater having seen, not one, but two love stories with an Idina Menzel look-alike, and thinking deep philosophical thoughts about the choices we make in our lives. Menzel’s doppelganger, Jackie Burns, made her…Continue
In life, we all have many choices to make. Sometimes the choices are small, like what we will eat for dinner or what we’ll do for fun on a Friday night, and sometimes the choices are big, like where we’ll go to college or what we want to do for the rest of our lives. Either way, choices unite us as human beings; we can relate to the process of making difficult decisions in one way or another. This is the main idea behind the new musical, If/Then. The…Continue
I’ll be the first to admit that I wasn’t exactly excited to see If/Then. I’d heard mediocre things about it in the past, so I was apprehensive going into the theatre. I’m glad to say that my apprehension was defeated. If/Then is an incredibly unique piece of theatre, directed by Michael Grief, and led by an impeccable cast. The show follows the two possible ways urban planner Elizabeth’s life may have ended up, one path…Continue
From the instant If/Then began, I immediately drew a parallel between the show and Robert Frost’s “The Road Not Taken.” Each work is about the other lives we can live, and how we make decisions, albeit seemingly insignificant ones, which affect our lives in conjunction with fate. If/Then, a modern musical that debuted in the spring of 2015, takes the same message as “Road” and expands it into a complex, intricate, and modern application of an age-old question: what…Continue
Theater is a visual medium at its core. You can binge on all the original cast albums you like, but seeing a show is a unique experience that really tells you the story. Theater needs to be seen, and shown in order to be experienced. Theater Latte Da’s production of Gypsy at the Pantages theater in Minneapolis was a production unique in the way that the visual elements of the production stood on their own rather than simply being the supportive…Continue
With a cast of local actors, Theater Latté Da and Hennepin Theatre Trust’s Gypsy has been inspiring audiences with a week of preview shows starting February 13th and opening night on February 20th at Pantages Theatre in Minneapolis. Based on true events, Gypsy is widely considered one of the best American musicals. Gypsy is the story of famed burlesque performer Gypsy Rose Lee, her sister June and the relationship they had with their…Continue
One song in Gypsy’s second act, “You Gotta Get a Gimmick,” emphasizes that every act needs a special je ne sais quoi in order to succeed. Theatre Latte Da and Hennepin Theatre Trust’s production of Gypsy is no different, but its “gimmick” is simply the dedication and talent poured into this show by every actor, crewmember, designer, and participant. Gypsy, performed at the very Pantages stage referenced by Mama Rose in the script, serves as the fourth…Continue