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Review Roundup: The Public Theater's INTO THE WOODS in Central Park - All the Reviews!

The Public Theater's production of Stephen Sondheim and James Lapine's beloved musical INTO THE WOODS, part of The Public's 50th Anniversary season at the Delacorte, officially opened tonight, August 9.  

The cast of INTO THE WOODS features Amy Adams (Baker's Wife); Jack Broderick (Narrator); Glenn Close (The Voice of the Giant); Gideon Glick (Jack); Cooper Grodin (Rapunzel's Prince); Ellen Harvey (Cinderella's Stepmother); Ivan Hernandez (Cinderella's Prince, Wolf); Tina Johnson (Red Ridinghood's Granny); Josh Lamon (Steward); Bethany Moore (Florinda); Jessie Mueller (Cinderella); Donna Murphy (The Witch); Denis O'Hare (The Baker); Jennifer Rias (Lucinda); Laura Shoop (Cinderella's Mother); Tess Soltau (Rapunzel); Sarah Stiles (Little Red Ridinghood); Kristine Zbornik (Jack's Mother); and Chip Zien (Mysterious Man). The non-Equity ensemble of INTO THE WOODS features Victoria Cook, Johnny NewcombNoah Radcliffe, and Eric R. Williams.  INTO THE WOODS features scenic design by John Lee Beatty and Soutra Gilmour; costume design by Emily Rebholz; lighting design by Ben Stanton, sound design by ACME Sound Partners, puppetry by Rachael Canning, wig design by Leah Loukas, movement direction by Liam Steel; orchestrations by Jonathan Tunick; and musical direction by Paul Gemignani

Let's see what the critics had to say... 

Ben Brantley, The New York Times: It breaks my heart to chalk up this production as another example of thwarted hopes...Central Park at night, when the moon rises and the wild things roam, sounded like the ideal and inevitable setting for stories of nature enchanted. Yet very little feels natural in this exhaustingly busy production. On the contrary, pretty much every element smacks of artifice. Admittedly, much of the cast isn't up to the demands of an intricate Sondheim score. But even those who are, like Ms. Murphy and Ms. Mueller, find their numbers undermined by the distractions of frantic and unfocused staging.

Elysa Gardner, USA TodayTimothy Sheader, who directed this production with Liam Steel, brings to the material the right mix of sincerity, whimsy and imagination...Adams is one of several cast members who follow memorable performances - in her case, that of Joanna Gleason, who earned a Tony Award in the original Broadway production - with their own distinctly winning interpretations. There are no real monsters in Into the Woods, just colorful, complicated, conflicted creatures who echo our own hopes and fears - and deliver an enchanting midsummer night's entertainment.

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