Review Roundup: BOOK OF MORMON National Tour
The First National Tour of THE BOOK OF MORMON launched earlier this month in Denver, running through September 2 at The Ellie Caulkins Opera House. Original Broadway cast member Jared Gertner will star as Elder Cunningham alog with Gavin Creel as Elder Price. Samantha Marie Ware joins as Nabulungi, as well as Grey Henson as Elder McKinley and Kevin Mambo as Mafala Hatimbi.
THE BOOK OF MORMON national tour will also feature Mike McGowan, Derrick Williams, Jon Bass, Jacob ben Widmar, Colin Bradbury, Josh Breckenridge, JR Bruno, Michael Buchanan, JoNathan Cullen, Bobby Daye, Talitha Farrow, Phyre Hawkins, Mykal Kilgore, Daniel LeClaire, Antyon LeMonte, Douglas Lyons, Kimberly Marable, Laiona Michelle, Kevin Michael Murphy, Michael Schwitter, Jeffrey David Sears, Marisha Wallace, Bud Weber, Christian Dante White, and JamaAl Wilson. For more information and a complete tour schedule, visit http://www.bookofmormonbroadway.com/tour_page.php.
Let's see what the Denver critics had to say...
Lisa Kennedy, Denver Post: Catchy music and bubbly performers make it easy to swallow more bitter observations of the lyrics in songs like the repression ditty "Turn It Off" and the show's most in-your-face tune, "Hasa Diga Eebowai." A spoonful of sugar indeed.
Claudia Carbone, Examiner: The underlying story of friendship trumps the scatological slant of Mormon. It’s a dazzling Broadway musical that you’ll want to see again for what you may have missed the first time around. Fortunately, the multi-award winning play will be back in Denver in October of 2013.
Juliet Wittman, Westword: The ideas may be freewheeling, but this production is tight, tight, tight. The acting could easily be over-the-top cartoony, but all of the actors are recognizably human and even, in a ridiculous way, dignified. Gavin Creel is a powerful Elder Price and Jared Gertner a charming, nebbishy Cunningham. Derrick Williams poises the warlord nicely between menace and buffoonery. And Samantha Marie Ware plays Nabulungi with sweetness and sly humor. The choreography, by Casey Nicholaw, is amazingly good, and all of the elements, including Ann Roth's costumes, Scott Pask's set design and Brian Macevitt's expressive lighting, work fluidly together.
KWGN: There are f-bombs, scatological puns, references to anatomy. But these jokes are never made at the expense of the larger story; they only add to it. There’s a difference between a put down and a send-up.
Luc Hatlestad, 5280: Although the actual Book of Mormon could never convert me to religion, the “The Book of Mormon” may well have converted me to musicals. Either that, or the pure genius of this production has ruined them for me forever. Regardless, as the cast waved Parker and Stone (along with Lopez and director Casey Nicholaw) to the stage for a curtain call, the Denver crowd’s breathtaking roar said it all: Thank you, boys. And welcome home.