Regional Roundup: Top New Features This Week Around Our BroadwayWorld 1/12 - RAGTIME, WAITRESS, and More!
BroadwayWorld presents a comprehensive weekly roundup of regional stories around our Broadway World, which include videos, editor spotlights, regional reviews and more. This week, we feature Ragtime, Waitress, Something Rotten, and more!
Check out our top features from around the BroadwayWorld below! Want more great global content? Check out our "Around The World" section!
Louisville: Contributor Taylor Clemens review WAITRESS at the Aronoff Center. He writes "The cast is uniformly stellar. Lead by the fantastic Desi Oakley as Jenna, who gives her performance equal parts grit, vulnerability, and spunk. Her voice soars in Bareilles' pop infused score, and more than once managed to pull at my heartstrings. Charity Angel Dawson's Becky is scrappy, sassy, and fierce. Dawson gets the fun task of delivering about 40% of the one liners throughout the show, and never fails to find the laugh. On top of it all, she's got a voice to beat the band, as displayed by her second act solo that leaves the crowd with their jaws glued to the floor. Lenne Klingaman as Dawn is sweet and sensitive, while ultimately discovering new things about herself as the show progresses. Her voice is great, and she gets a great chance to show off her comedic chops with her first act solo. Fenkart as Dr. Pomatter is funny, endearing, and has wonderful chemistry with Oakley. Jeremy Morse is an absolute delight as Ogie. I'm not going to ruin anything for you with context, but lets just say Morse comes out of nowhere and instantly has the audience eating out of the palm of his hand."
Salt Lake City: Contributor Tyler Hinton reviews SOMETHING ROTTEN at the Eccles. He writes "The production itself is worthy of the performances. The choreography by director Casey Nicholaw (ALADDIN) is precise and joyous. The scenic design by Scott Pask (THE BOOK OF MORMON) and lighting design by Jeff Croiter (NEWSIES) work in tandem to create a colorful, exaggerated world that is filled with the lush, whimsical costumes designed by Gregg Barnes (KINKY BOOTS)."
Houston: Contributor Audrey Morabito reviews THE COLOR PURPLE at The Hobby Center. She writes "Adrianna Hicks played the initially innocent, sensitive Celie with her mind, body, and soul simultaneously at play. It takes immense focus and technical training to deliver the vocal and acting performance of her character, but the performance she gave required an additional focus of compassion, empathy, and depth. In the beginning of Act I, she already had the audience in the palm of her hand, as the only sounds you could hear were the creaking floorboards of the rustic set and her flawlessly raw voice singing "Somebody Gonna Love You". Her 11 o'clock number "I'm Here" was even more stunning, and Hicks completely stole the performance with it."
Nashville: Contributor Cellea Hougton reviews JERSEY BOYS at TPAC. She writes "And audience-goers treated Jonny Wexler (Frankie Valli), Corey Greenan (Tommy DeVito), Tommaso Antico (Bob Gaudio) and Chris Stevens (Nick Massi) as if they were the real Four Seasons, cheering them on just as enthusiastically as if it was the 1960s. With their impeccable harmonies, each of the four actors seemed to step back in time themselves to capture the essence of their character's flaws and strengths, not to mention the ensemble cast that managed to take on multiple roles, brilliantly bringing to life the other figures that played an important role in the singers' lives."
Rhode Island: Contributor Andria Tieman reviews THE BODYGUARD at the Providence PAC. She writes "There are moments that are genuinely funny and sweet. Some excellent staging ramps up the feeling of danger at all the right times, and the lighting mimics concert pyrotechnics very effectively. The role of the sister, who was barely in the movie, has been increased and actress Jasmin Richardson as Nikki Marron really brings some needed empathy, as well as some powerful vocal talents. Kevelin B. Jones III as Fletcher, Rachel Marron's 10-year-old son is clearly a star in the making and he has the voice and moves of a young Michael Jackson."
Japan: Contributor Mara Jill Herman reviews ALADDIN Tokyo. She writes ""Friend Like Me," performed by the charming Akutsu, is zany and jaw dropping. There's gold. There's glitz. There's pyrotechnics with a never-ending feast of glitter, magic tricks, and dance segments that pay tribute to famous musical theater moments (the opening of A Chorus Line). Chad Beguelin's book allows Akutsu to play everything from literal to deadpan humor. When Aladdin asks about the Genie's habitat ("So you came from inside the lamp?") he responds with "No, I'm from Tokyo," another reference much appreciated by the crowd. And then there's the Disney mega mix with snippets from "Beauty And The Beast," "Part Of Your World," "Under The Sea," and "Colors Of The Wind." Nicholaw even hearkens the old-time era of 42nd Street with a rousing tap conclusion."
Denver: Contributor Chris Arneson reviews THE KING AND I at the Buell. He writes "The performances could not have been any better. Jose Llana brought a finessed balance of power and wit to the King of Siam, both layered with a sentimental core. Madeline Trumble gave teacher Anna Leonowens a great amount of spirit and a commanding presence. Q Lim as Tuptim was a standout, portraying the young slave girl with vigor and passion, partnered beautifully with Kavin Panmeechao's strong Lun Tha. Joan Almedilla gave an unwavering performance as the king's head wife, Lady Thiang. A supporting cast filled with dynamically diverse children gave the show excellent stability."
Connecticut: Contributor Joseph Harrison reviews RAGTIME at Connecticut Theatre Company. He writes "Overall, RAGTIME, as presented by the Connecticut Theatre Company is a real gem. The story it tells couldn't be timlier and its message of resilience, love and compassion for others is an important lesson for all. The production is thrilling, touching, exciting and thought-provoking - all the things a great night of theatre should be. I am excited to have been able to experience CTC and its production of RAGTIME, and I look forward to what this talented group will offer next."
Regional Editor Spotlight:
Nashville Contributing Editor
Originally from Cape Cod, Massachusetts, Cillea is a freelance writer currently based in Nashville, Tennessee. Being in the country music capital of the world, she writes daily news and artist profiles for Taste of Country, in addition to covering other aspects of the Nashville scene for a variety of publications. Her love of musical theatre, particularly "Phantom of the Opera," inspired her to write for BroadwayWorld.
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