Review: SIX THE MUSICAL National Tour Presented by Broadway In Chicago

The Chicago engagement of the national tour runs through July 14, 2024

By: Jun. 06, 2024
Review: SIX THE MUSICAL National Tour Presented by Broadway In Chicago
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The SIX queendom is back in Chicago for a third visit...and this latest group of queens still magnificently bring the house down with Toby Marlow and Lucy Moss’s clever book and fantastic pop Broadway-style songs.

Full disclosure: This was my fifth time seeing SIX. To my mind, there’s no question this is one of the smartest and most fun original new musicals we’ve seen in the past few years. I adore SIX not only for its clever reimagining of the infamous history of Henry VIII’s six wives — appearing here as pop divas competing against one another about who had it worst at the hands of the king (Spoiler alert: It was mainly awful for all but one of them) — but also because the show is immensely joyful, tightly structured, and never boring. 

This current national tour still represents co-directors Moss and Jamie Armitage’s original SIX vision with choreography from Carrie-Anne Ingrouille, as well as the design team’s original designs. These tour queens worked with Associate Director Galia Backal, Associate Choreographer Eliza Ohman, Resident Director Cristina Angeles, and Resident Choreographers Taylor McMahon and Elizabeth Racanelli to bring the show to life. 

This group of queens brought full-force energy to the show’s signature raucous, upbeat queen songs (and one power ballad). If you’ve never seen SIX before, this cast truly delivers the full experience of each song in Marlow and Moss’s score — each solo is inspired by a few real-life pop stars. At this performance, alternate Taylor Sage Evans’s performance as Katherine Howard was particularly impressive (Evans covers three different queen tracks.) Howard’s simultaneously bombastic, bubble gum pop and heartbreaking solo “All You Wanna Do” is one of my favorite numbers in the show — and one of the most difficult — and Evans pulled it off beautifully. Evans made it look easy, while also portraying the full devastating emotional arc of the song as Katherine Howard realizes that the men in her young life just want to use and abuse her. 

Cassie Silva might be my favorite Anne Boleyn that I’ve seen. Silva’s character acting was razor-sharp; she took on a specific and amusing character voice for her solo “Don’t Lose Ur Head,” and I appreciated that she really rose to the challenge of making Anne a larger-than-life character. 

Adriana Scalice had a calming yet strong energy as Catherine Parr, the wife who survives; she gave “I Don’t Need Your Love” a lighter touch that slowly builded to a powerful conclusion (complete with power riffs). 

Kristina Leopold, Kelly Denice Taylor, and Danielle Mendoza are equally compelling and skilled as Catherine of Aragon, Jane Seymour, and Anna of Cleves respectively (and I’ve seen SIX enough times to know that Mendoza made some fun and unique vocal choices on her delectable solo “Get Down.”) 

These six queens also nail the ensemble parts of the show. The opener “Ex-Wives,” the titular ending song, and, in particular, the humorous character song “Haus of Holbein” are all wonderful. I admired this ensemble’s commitment to the bit on “Haus of Holbein,” with some over-the-top character acting that was a great and satisfying contrast to the glam of the queens. 

These queens deliver a royally fun and powerful SIX.

The Chicago engagement of the SIX national tour plays the James M. Nederlander Theater, 24 West Randolph, through July 14, 2024. Tickets are $39 - $134.

Photo Credit: Joan Marcus 


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