Review: Jonathan Larson's TICK, TICK...BOOM! At Theatre Three

The musical from the writer of RENT is running through March 16 at Theatre Three.

By: Feb. 22, 2024
Review: Jonathan Larson's TICK, TICK...BOOM! At Theatre Three
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As a "renthead", I am thrilled to see Jonathan Larson's autobiographical musical tick, tick... BOOM! part of Theatre Three's current (53rd!) season. The cast at the charming Port Jefferson, Long Island, venue is extraordinarily talented and does the show justice in a forum in which it should be presented; an intimate theatre.

Mr. Larson started performing this raw and real story in 1990. After the Pulitzer and Tony award winner's untimely death in 1996, just before his iconic creation Rent opened, David Auburn cleaned up the piece into what we see today. This revised edition started performances off-Broadway in 2001 and has grown tremendously.

Running through March 16th, Theatre Three Artistic Director Jeffrey Sanzel wonderfully directs the superb three-person cast headed up strongly by Robbie Torres as Jon.

The story follows Jon, a starving playwright, looking to make it big on the Great White Way. Unfortunately, this is taking longer than he had hoped. As his thirtieth birthday is approaching, Jon is having doubts - ok, freak outs - about the career path he's taken. Does he continue to follow his heart and something he loves - the theatre - that could possibly never come into fruition or venture to a secure, well paying but uninteresting field like his best friend and former actor Michael, portrayed by Jason Furnari? He also considers how this is affecting his relationship with his girlfriend, Susan, wonderfully portrayed by Veronica Fox. Mr. Torres, Ms. Fox, and Mr. Furnari are all top notch in their respective roles effortlessly performing the rock score. This is indeed a moving story and you are sure to leave the theatre quite affected.

On the clever creative team, Randall Parsons' set is well done. Taking place mostly in Jon's apartment, a couch, make-shift desk, and Jon's keyboard are highlighted. There are also some rolling pieces and perhaps a little imagination from the audience is needed. He is living the starving artist's lifestyle. A live band accompanies the cast excellently headed up by Music Director Jeffrey Hoffman. Indeed, this is all elevated by Stacey Boggs atmospheric lighting for a visually stunning production.

And so, tick, tick... BOOM! is another fantastic hit for Port Jefferson's Theatre Three. This is a show that will make you reflect, maybe cry, and, frankly, have a host of many emotions. Naturally... this is a Jonathan Larson production. Come to this show with an open mind and heart because this cast will really take you on a journey.

 Steven Uihlein, Theatre Three Productions, Inc.


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