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BWW Reviews: BIG RIVER Delights Audiences at Grosse Pointe Theatre Through Feb 2


Sometimes you just want to jump on a raft and float down the river just for the fun of it. If you're a fan of Mark Twain, you'll love Big River; this musical takes you on the famed journey down the Mississippi, with Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn singing and dancing right before your eyes. Now on stage at Grosse Pointe Theatre is the effusive musical, complete with jovial action, infectious songs, larger than life characters, and superb talent.

Starring Grant Hale as the legendary Huckleberry Finn, Big River is explosive with youth and energy. Hale has a wonderful voice and sparkling charisma which expands exponentially when synchronized with the antics of Tom Sawyer, played deliciously by Jeremy Harr. With a cameo by Mark Twain, played admirably by Dennis Martell, you know within the first 15 minutes this play is exceptional!

Slave Jim, played with unmitigated pathos by Leon Anderson, Jr., is a phenomenal character brought to life through Anderson's riveting interpretation and magnificent voice. Widow Douglas (Jacqueline DiSante) and Miss Watson (Laura Bartell) bring a sincerity as pure as fresh cornbread to the old-fashioned abode.

The rascals King and Duke are hilariously played by Dennis Martell and Kevin Fitzhenry. This play flows like a river of delight, having cast members that create a memorable narrative.

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