Review Roundup: A CHORUS LINE at The Muny
Considered a landmark celebration of the American Musical, A Chorus Line follows the lives of 17 Broadway dancers vying for a spot "on the line." Zach, a driven director/choreographer at the helm of a suspenseful audition, will stop at nothing to assemble an unforgettable chorus, no matter the price. With music by Oscar and Tony winning Marvin Hamlisch, A Chorus Line defines glittering promise, unwavering determination and stakes as high as the kickline itself. This is one Muny "singular sensation" you won't want to miss!
This sensational cast includes: Mackenzie Bell (Val), Holly Ann Butler (Sheila), Caley Crawford (Bebe), Rick Faugno (Al), Hannah Florence (Diana), Ivan Hernandez (Zach), Jolina Javier (Connie), Madison Johnson (Kristine), Sean Harrison Jones (Mike), Evan Kinnane (Bobby), Bianca Marroquín (Cassie), Ian Paget (Paul), Justin Prescott (Don), Drew Redington (Mark), Kiira Schmidt (Judy), Bronwyn Tarboton (Maggie), Sharrod Williams (Richie), Victor Wisehart (Greg) and John T. Wolfe (Larry). The company is also joined by The Muny kid and teen youth ensembles.
A spectacular design team leads this production with direction and choreography by Denis Jones, music direction by Ben Whiteley, scenic design by Paige Hathaway, costume design by Andrea Lauer, lighting design by Rob Denton, sound design by John Shivers and David Patridge, video design by Nathan W. Scheuer, wig design by Robert Pickens, with production stage manager Laurie Goldfeder.
Let's see what the critics have to say!
St. Louis Post Dispatch (Judith Newmark): For example, an adorable little boy in a striped yellow shirt dances along with Mike (Sean Harrison Jones, also in yellow stripes) to capture the moment when he realized that "I Can Do That." In "At The Ballet," Sheila (Holly Ann Butler), Bebe (Caley Crawford) and Maggie (Bronwyn Tarboton), none a happy little girl except at the barre, are echoed by little girls in leotards.
Belleville News Democrat (Lynn Venhaus): The dance, of course, is spectacular. Jones has added flourishes to the legendary director-choreographer Michael Bennett's innovative work, which remains vibrant. In an unprecedented and striking addition, he provides another dimension to the cast's hopes and dreams. The Muny youth ensemble appears as characters' younger selves in certain numbers.
BroadwayWorld (Chris Gibson): Director/Choreographer Denis Jones' conception of this show is startling, and adds a welcome element that I've never encountered in a production of A CHORUS LINE before. Ben Whiteley's music direction is simply sublime, and the orchestra injects a great deal of excitement into this work. Paige Hathaway's scenic design is simple and stark, but still larger than life to fit the vast stage, with huge mirrors reflecting the dancers and the audience. Nathan W. Scheuer's video designs add another dimension to the stories being told, and Rob Denton's lighting keeps each story and dancer in clear focus. Andrea Lauer's costumes fit the characters well, and deftly recreates the vintage look of the flashy costumes that close the show.