Rachel Weinberg

Rachel Weinberg Chicago native Rachel Weinberg has been one of the most frequent contributing editors and critics for BroadwayWorld Chicago over the past four years. She is currently pursuing a Masters in Integrated Marketing Communications from the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University. Rachel previously worked on the digital marketing team at Goodman Theatre and spent a season as a Marketing Apprentice for Roundabout Theatre Company in New York City. She earned her undergraduate degree in Communication and Spanish from the University of Pennsylvania. You can find her online at RachelWeinbergReviews.com and follow her on Twitter @RachelRWeinberg.


MOST POPULAR ARTICLES
LAST 30 DAYS

BWW Review: Broadway In Chicago Presents THE COLOR PURPLEBWW Review: Broadway In Chicago Presents THE COLOR PURPLE
Posted: Jul. 19, 2018


LAST 365 DAYS

BWW Review: THE MINUTES at Steppenwolf Theatre CompanyBWW Review: THE MINUTES at Steppenwolf Theatre Company
Posted: Nov. 22, 2017


BWW Interview: Jeremy Morse On the Empowerment and Entertainment Served Up in WAITRESSBWW Interview: Jeremy Morse On the Empowerment and Entertainment Served Up in WAITRESS
Posted: Jun. 15, 2018


10 On Tuesday with HAYMARKET'S Bridget Adams-King10 On Tuesday with HAYMARKET'S Bridget Adams-King
Posted: Jun. 20, 2018


BWW Review: THE MADRES at Teatro VistaBWW Review: THE MADRES at Teatro Vista
Posted: Apr. 28, 2018


BWW Interview: Erin Burniston On Capturing Elvis's Legacy Onstage in HEARTBREAK HOTELBWW Interview: Erin Burniston On Capturing Elvis's Legacy Onstage in HEARTBREAK HOTEL
Posted: Jun. 18, 2018


BWW Review: AVENUE Q at Mercury Theater Has Big Laughs and A Bigger HeartBWW Review: AVENUE Q at Mercury Theater Has Big Laughs and A Bigger Heart
Posted: Jul. 1, 2018


BWW Interview: Carrie Compere Reflects on THE COLOR PURPLE'S Message of Self-Discovery and Human ConnectionBWW Interview: Carrie Compere Reflects on THE COLOR PURPLE'S Message of Self-Discovery and Human Connection
Posted: Jul. 13, 2018


BWW Review: Broadway In Chicago Presents THE COLOR PURPLEBWW Review: Broadway In Chicago Presents THE COLOR PURPLE
July 19, 2018

The touring production of John Doyle's 2016 Tony Award-winning revival THE COLOR PURPLE has landed at Chicago's Auditorium Theatre, where it will make hearts both soar and ache with the blaze of emotion it delivers. Doyle, a director best known for his stripped-down productions of American musicals, has applied that minimalist treatment here as well. And it works beautifully. The set only features a few modest risers flanked by a backdrop wall featuring several wooden chairs (Doyle also designed the scenery). When the actors first make their entrances, they bring more of these simple chairs along with them as they invite the audience into the story. This simplicity, also mirrored in Ann Hould-Ward's costumes and Jane Cox's lighting design, brings a profundity to the staging. THE COLOR PURPLE's modest production values never feel like they're skimpy, but rather they lay the foundation for the show's deeply human message.

BWW Review: HEARTBREAK HOTEL at Broadway In ChicagoBWW Review: HEARTBREAK HOTEL at Broadway In Chicago
July 17, 2018

In the new Elvis musical HEARTBREAK HOTEL, hearts are unfortunately not the only thing that's breaking at the Broadway Playhouse. This show, from MILLION DOLLAR QUARTER co-creator Floyd Mutrux (who also directs), serves up slice-and-dice theater. Watching the musical gave me a feeling of theatrical whiplash, as it rotated between scenes and songs at a confusingly rapid speed. While I was much looking forward to hearing some of Elvis's greatest hits live onstage, Mutrux's book delivers them piecemeal. Most of Elvis's songs are reduced to snippets of roughly 30 seconds or so, which might leave even the most hard-core fans of 'the King' wishing for more.

BWW Interview: Carrie Compere Reflects on THE COLOR PURPLE'S Message of Self-Discovery and Human ConnectionBWW Interview: Carrie Compere Reflects on THE COLOR PURPLE'S Message of Self-Discovery and Human Connection
July 13, 2018

Chicago audiences will be able to experience the 2016 Tony Award-winning revival of THE COLOR PURPLE for the first time next week. But Carrie Compere, who plays the role of Sofia, is no stranger to the production. Compere first took on the role as an understudy and then a replacement during the production's Broadway run. In advance of the show's arrival in the Windy City, Compere reflected on what it means to return to the production and her life on tour.

BWW Review: Chicago Shakespeare Theater's PETER PAN Provides High-Flying FunBWW Review: Chicago Shakespeare Theater's PETER PAN Provides High-Flying Fun
July 9, 2018

Chicago Shakespeare Theater's summer family musical PETER PAN is chock full of dazzling moments that will delight children and adults alike. With music and lyrics by George Stiles and Anthony Drewe with a new book by Elliot Davis (based upon the book by Willis Hall), this production captures all the magic of the classic story of the boy who refuses to grow up in just 75 minutes. Adult audience members who are fans of J.M. Barrie's original novel or the iconic Disney animated film will find this PETER PAN a refreshing mix of the familiar and the new. And of course, young audiences seeing the story of PETER PAN for the first time will be altogether surprised and amazed by this telling.

BWW Review: SUPPORT GROUP FOR MEN at Goodman TheatreBWW Review: SUPPORT GROUP FOR MEN at Goodman Theatre
July 4, 2018

Ellen Fairey's SUPPORT GROUP FOR MEN, now in a world premiere at Goodman Theatre, finds that sweet spot between hilarious and gently critical of modern society. As might be presumed from the title, Fairey's play concerns a gathering of four Chicago men who come together on Thursday nights in an apartment that borders on the edge of Wrigleyville and Boystown. Fairey's exploration of gender roles and the increasing need to become more open and embracing of those outside the binary means that the play's locale is particularly central to its narrative. And while some of the characters in SUPPORT GROUP seem rather set in their ways, Fairey is careful to never point fingers in a mean-spirited way. The play succeeds in large part because Fairey displays such a great deal of empathy for each of her characters.

BWW Review: THE ROOMMATE at Steppenwolf Theatre CompanyBWW Review: THE ROOMMATE at Steppenwolf Theatre Company
July 2, 2018

Jen Silverman's THE ROOMMATE, now playing in Steppenwolf's Downstairs Theatre, offers audiences a veritable master class in acting via Sandra Marquez and Ora Jones. Under the direction of Phylicia Rashad, Marquez and Jones have a touching and natural onstage rapport. The material of Silverman's play itself, however, does not exactly match the high bar of the performers. In fact, THE ROOMMATE feels rather uneven; the play dangles loose threads in front of the audience, introducing some major themes but never quite bringing any of them to fruition.

BWW Review: AVENUE Q at Mercury Theater Has Big Laughs and A Bigger HeartBWW Review: AVENUE Q at Mercury Theater Has Big Laughs and A Bigger Heart
July 1, 2018

Whether you have seen AVENUE Q before and can mouth the lyrics to all the songs or if you have never experienced it, Mercury Theater's production is worth a visit. AVENUE Q will provide uproarious and NSFW laughs for days, but it also will touch your heart and provide a much-needed dose of theatrical sunshine.

BWW Review: Broadway-Bound THE CHER SHOW In ChicagoBWW Review: Broadway-Bound THE CHER SHOW In Chicago
June 29, 2018

The pre-Broadway engagement of THE CHER SHOW has made its way to Chicago in a blaze of colorful, over-the-top energy and replete with the artist's chart-topping hits. Three utterly talented women share the title role: Broadway veteran Stephanie J. Block as Star, Teal Wicks as Lady, and newcomer Micaela Diamond as Babe. Together, these actors deliver a powerhouse trio of performances worthy of Cher herself. Diehard Cher fans will be pleased to know that such iconic songs as 'I Got You, Babe,' 'If I Could Turn Back Time,' and, of course, 'Believe' are in more than capable hands.

10 On Tuesday with Kristiana Rae Colón
June 26, 2018

BroadwayWorld Chicago caught up with local playwright Kristiana Rae Colon, whose latest play TILIKUM opens at Sideshow Theatre Company on Thursday.

10 On Tuesday with HAYMARKET'S Bridget Adams-King10 On Tuesday with HAYMARKET'S Bridget Adams-King
June 20, 2018

Bridget Adams-King is currently taking the stage as Lucy Parsons in Underscore Theatre Company's and The Den Theatre's HAYMARKET. She took some time to reflect on her Chicago theater experiences with 10 On Tuesday.

BWW Interview: Erin Burniston On Capturing Elvis's Legacy Onstage in HEARTBREAK HOTELBWW Interview: Erin Burniston On Capturing Elvis's Legacy Onstage in HEARTBREAK HOTEL
June 18, 2018

I recently caught up with Erin Burniston, who plays the role of Elvis's girlfriend in HEARTBREAK HOTEL. Envisioned as the prequel to the long-running Chicago hit MILLION DOLLAR QUARTET, HEARTBREAK HOTEL charts Elvis's rise to fame. Burniston chatted about the development process for this new musical and the experience of performing the legendary singer's music onstage.

BWW Interview: Jeremy Morse On the Empowerment and Entertainment Served Up in WAITRESSBWW Interview: Jeremy Morse On the Empowerment and Entertainment Served Up in WAITRESS
June 15, 2018

Actor Jeremy Morse discussed what it's been like to perform Sara Bareille's songs for the past three years in WAITRESS from its pre-Broadway engagement to the current tour, highlights of tour life, and of course, pie.

BWW Review: GUARDS AT THE TAJ at SteppenwolfBWW Review: GUARDS AT THE TAJ at Steppenwolf
June 12, 2018

Steppenwolf's production reunites cast members Metwally and Moayed along with director Amy Morton. Together, these three artists collaborated with Joseph for the play's world premiere production at Atlantic Theatre in New York City in 2015. Accordingly, the present production is a unique and deeply emotional experience.

BWW Review: MEMPHIS at Porchlight Music TheatreBWW Review: MEMPHIS at Porchlight Music Theatre
April 30, 2018

Hockadoo! Porchlight Music Theatre's MEMPHIS bursts onto the stage with joy and earnest energy. Under the direction of Daryl Brooks, this musical sheds light on timely historical issues while milking the show's sweetest, most exuberant moments for all they're worth.

BWW Review: THE MADRES at Teatro VistaBWW Review: THE MADRES at Teatro Vista
April 28, 2018

Stephanie Allison Walker's play highlights a moment in Argentina's history, her portrait of the silencing of voices, the torture of loved ones, and the women who rose up against injustice finds complete alignment with the present moment.

Reporter's Notebook: PASS OVER Advance ScreeningReporter's Notebook: PASS OVER Advance Screening
April 18, 2018

PASS OVER was by far one of the best productions to grace a Chicago stage last season, and now anyone with an Amazon account will have the privilege to see this searing, timely, and extraordinarily necessary production come Friday. It is nothing short of remarkable that now so many will have access to this beautiful interpretation of Nwandu's play. This is compulsory viewing for all, and it is an incredible opportunity to see a filmed version of PASS OVER that truly represents the immediacy of live theater.

BWW Review: LETTIE at Victory Gardens TheaterBWW Review: LETTIE at Victory Gardens Theater
April 14, 2018

Boo Killebrew's world premiere play LETTIE is profoundly heartbreaking and brilliantly conceived. Under the direction of Artistic Director Chay Yew, the production devastatingly unfolds the narrative of the titular working class ex-convict Lettie. Both Killebrew's masterful, raw writing and Yew's superlative ensemble-with Caroline Neff in the title role and doing some of the best work so far of her career-bring immense pathos and a swirl of shifting emotions upon the audience.

Review: 9 TO 5 THE MUSICAL at Firebrand TheatreReview: 9 TO 5 THE MUSICAL at Firebrand Theatre
April 13, 2018

Firebrand Theatre's production of 9 TO 5 THE MUSICAL makes a good deal of sense for the company to stage, especially as it's the first show directed by Artistic Director Harmony France. This outsized, comical musical focuses on three women navigating office politics in 1979 as they plot revenge against their company's sexist and outlandish CEO. With songs by Dolly Parton and a book by Patricia Resnick, 9 TO 5 is a fun romp of a musical with a bluegrass twinge and tons of laughs.

4 Favorite Productions from American Theater Company4 Favorite Productions from American Theater Company
March 16, 2018

Today American Theater Company announced that it was shutting its doors after 33 years. Under the direction of late Artistic Director PJ Paparelli, American Theater Company made its name as one of the most groundbreaking and well-regard storefront theaters in Chicago. Among other productions, ATC staged the world premieres of Ayad Akhtar's Pulitzer Prize winner Disgraced and Stephen Karam's The Humans. In ATC's most recent era, Artistic Director Will Davis staged innovative pieces with a clear and unique vision. I have many fond memories of seeing productions at ATC, and below are some of my favorites. Farewell, American Theater Company. Chicago will miss you dearly.

BWW Interview: Chicago Native Amaris Sanchez Sings and Dances Her Way Through ON YOUR FEET!BWW Interview: Chicago Native Amaris Sanchez Sings and Dances Her Way Through ON YOUR FEET!
March 7, 2018

I chatted with local Chicagoan Amaris Sanchez, who plays Little Gloria in the national tour of ON YOUR FEET! in advance of the show's arrival in Chicago.



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