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BWW Review: LIZZIE at DREAM ART CENTER THEATER 1, 'Lizzie Borden took an ax...'

BWW Review: LIZZIE at DREAM ART CENTER THEATER 1, 'Lizzie Borden took an ax...'

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BWW Review: LIZZIE at DREAM ART CENTER THEATER 1, 'Lizzie Borden took an ax...'

On an extremely hot August day of 1892, in the house of Borden, a terrible incident happened. All is left are two corpses, one suspect, and three witnesses. Thus begins the journey of LIZZIE the musical. LIZZIE had its first performance on April 2 at the Dream Art Center Theater 1.

LIZZIE is based on the true story of Lizzie Borden and the Ax Murders, which happened on August 4, 1892, in Fall River, Massachusetts. The story focuses on the four characters, Lizzie Borden, Emma Borden, Maggie (Bridget) Sullivan, and Alice Russell, and how they deal with the murder investigation. Lizzie Borden, the second daughter of Abbey and Andrew Borden, had a rather difficult childhood with her mother dying when she was young and her father immorally harassing her. On top of that, her only sister Emma Borden leaves her temporarily when things get bad in the house. Bridget Sullivan, who goes by the name, Maggie, the previous maid's name, is the one to witness not only the deadly incident but can keep an eye on Emma and Lizzie. Alice Russell, the neighbor to the Bordens, shows a particular interest in Lizzie and stands by her side all along.

The most exciting aspect of LIZZIE is that it is a piece of work that demolishes the norm of having to have 'one' specific concept or background. The beginning of LIZZIE shows the actors wearing standard 19th-century attire with their hairs tied up. At first glance, anybody would think that LIZZIE is just a typical musical with a narrative of women in the 19th century. However, as soon as the second number starts, you will be surprised as the sound of an electronic guitar resonates throughout the theater. LIZZIE is a musical that can be described as harmony between tradition and modernism. Not only with the numbers, but the concept, aesthetic, and narrative itself all contain different aspects that seem traditional but also very modern.

As shocking as the Lizzie Borden Ax Murders incident is, LIZZIE is much more than just a horror or dark comedy musical. The story focuses on four female characters and how they each cope with their struggles yet find peace and friendship throughout the situation. Especially in the case of Lizzie Borden. However, she is assumed to be a vicious murderer, the audience finally gets to see a different image of her, where she is released from all that was suffocating her. LIZZIE makes us not only think about why Lizzie Borden did the ax murders but why the four women pleaded not guilty.

The story of LIZZIE ends on June 21. Tickets start at 55,000 KRW and can be purchased online at or the box office. Please check the cast and details on the website before buying tickets.

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From This Author Jimin Lee