St. Louis Theater Reviews
 


BWW Review: Lively and Engaging ON YOUR FEET! at The Fox BWW Review: Lively and Engaging ON YOUR FEET! at The Fox
by Chris Gibson - November 09, 2017

There are jukebox musicals that utilize the catalog of a group to hang a story thread onto that may or may not fit particularly well, and there are those that are portraits of the songwriters themselves. I think the latter actually works the best, and that's what you get when you see ON YOUR FEET!, ... (more...)
BWW Review: David Lanz's Gorgeous FRENCH IMPRESSIONS BWW Review: David Lanz's Gorgeous FRENCH IMPRESSIONS
by Chris Gibson - November 06, 2017

As the liner notes reveal, this collection by composer/pianist David Lanz sprang forth from improvisations that resulted during preparations for the NORWEGIAN RAIN album. By warming up with these spontaneous songs, he allowed their gentle influence to wash over the latter work's tracks. But, FRENCH ... (more...)
BWW Review: Expect the Unexpected in Repertory Theatre St. Louis' Wonderful HEISENBERG BWW Review: Expect the Unexpected in Repertory Theatre St. Louis' Wonderful HEISENBERG
by Chris Gibson - November 02, 2017

Life lurches along in unexpected directions for most of us, and that's what makes playwright Simon Stephens' HEISENBERG so identifiable. There actually is a Heisenberg Principle , which says: it is impossible to measure the position and velocity of a particle at the same time. So, we're never abl... (more...)
BWW Review: Marvelous HAMLET at The Repertory Theatre of St. Louis BWW Review: Marvelous HAMLET at The Repertory Theatre of St. Louis
by Chris Gibson - October 18, 2017

The Repertory Theatre of St. Louis presents a uniquely engaging and compelling presentation of one of Shakespeare's finest plays with their current production of HAMLET. So many great lines that have become a part of our language are present here, and it's really amazing to think that the Rep hasn't... (more...)
BWW Review: Upstream Theater's Delightful Slice of History SWEET REVENGE BWW Review: Upstream Theater's Delightful Slice of History SWEET REVENGE
by Chris Gibson - October 09, 2017

SWEET REVENGE, with the subtitle of: as performed by the Julius Slowacki Players, Saint Louis, 1933, is a delightful look back at our city's own Polish heritage. Artistic Director Philip Boehm translates ZEMSTA by playwright Aleksander Fredo, but gives the work a twist by showing us how the troupe... (more...)
BWW Review: New Jewish Theatre's Touching TUESDAYS WITH MORRIE BWW Review: New Jewish Theatre's Touching TUESDAYS WITH MORRIE
by Chris Gibson - October 09, 2017

watch, and some people, who might be especially sensitive on these matters, might be put off at the thought of witnessing a person deteriorate over time due to the ravages of ALS. But they'd be depriving themselves of the chance to learn some of the same life lessons that author Mitch Albom did duri... (more...)
BWW Review: Music Provides the Highlights for THE BODYGUARD at the Fox Theatre BWW Review: Music Provides the Highlights for THE BODYGUARD at the Fox Theatre
by Chris Gibson - October 06, 2017

There have been some truly successful musicals that have been adapted from films, and there have been more than a few that just didn't work. Often, what plays well on screen simply doesn't translate to the stage, no matter how much technical wizardry you utilize. THE BODYGUARD isn't the worst musica... (more...)
BWW Review: New Line Theatre's Excellent LIZZIE Rocks Hard! BWW Review: New Line Theatre's Excellent LIZZIE Rocks Hard!
by Chris Gibson - October 04, 2017

LIZZIE is a unique musical experience, and I was absolutely blown away by it. The product of the team of Steven Cheslik-deMeyer, Alan Stevens Hewitt, and Tim Maner, who all contributed to the book, music, lyrics and orchestrations; it's a true rock opera. Watching and listening to this powerful show... (more...)
BWW Review: The Repertory Theatre of St. Louis's Brilliant THE CURIOUS INCIDENT OF THE DOG IN THE NIGHT-TIME BWW Review: The Repertory Theatre of St. Louis's Brilliant THE CURIOUS INCIDENT OF THE DOG IN THE NIGHT-TIME
by Chris Gibson - September 25, 2017

The Repertory Theatre of St. Louis opens their season with an amazing bit of brilliance called THE CURIOUS INCIDENT OF THE DOG IN THE NIGHT-TIME, adapted from the novel by Mark Haddon by playwright Simon Stephens. It's a story filled with marvelous touches that plunges you into a world filtered thro... (more...)
BWW Review: STAGES St. Louis's Superb SOUTH PACIFIC BWW Review: STAGES St. Louis's Superb SOUTH PACIFIC
by Chris Gibson - September 18, 2017

STAGES St. Louis ends their season with an wonderfully mounted production of Rodgers and Hammerstein's SOUTH PACIFIC. It's a classic musical absolutely filled to the brim with memorable songs, many of which have become standards. In fact, you'll likely find yourself humming any number of them as you... (more...)
BWW Review: STL Opera Collective Presents TESLA'S PIGEON and TO HELL AND BACK BWW Review: STL Opera Collective Presents TESLA'S PIGEON and TO HELL AND BACK
by Chris Gibson - September 13, 2017

Since our resident opera critic, Steve Callahan, was appearing in one of the pocket operas produced this past weekend (September 8-9, 2017) by the STL Opera Collective, he asked if I would cover the shows, and I was happy to do so. This is a group that is just in their second season, but judging b... (more...)
BWW Review: GREASE at Starlight Theatre BWW Review: GREASE at Starlight Theatre
by Alan Portner - September 09, 2017

Features show built for the huge stage with many local talents... (more...)
BWW Review: New Line Theatre's Lovely OUT ON BROADWAY THE THIRD COMING BWW Review: New Line Theatre's Lovely OUT ON BROADWAY THE THIRD COMING
by Chris Gibson - August 22, 2017

Originally conceived by artistic director Scott Miller over 20 years ago, OUT ON BROADWAY (THE THIRD COMING), is, as titled, the third incarnation of a revue designed to reinterpret songs from an array of classic and offbeat, but brilliant, musicals ( this time with a new song from Jason Robert Brow... (more...)
BWW Review: MAMMA MIA! Has a Grand Farewell at the FOX This Weekend BWW Review: MAMMA MIA! Has a Grand Farewell at the FOX This Weekend
by Chris Gibson - August 01, 2017

MAMMA MIA! officially ended it's farewell tour this past weekend, and it was interesting to see the audience reaction to a show I've seen at least six times. But, I'm a critic. The appeal is obvious really, it's a simple story (book by Catherine Johnson) that allows you to enjoy the undeniably catch... (more...)
BWW Review: The MUNY's Incredible and Heartfelt A CHORUS LINE BWW Review: The MUNY's Incredible and Heartfelt A CHORUS LINE
by Chris Gibson - August 01, 2017

A CHORUS LINE was the creation of Michael Bennett, one of Broadway's finest choreographers, who held a series of workshops in the mid 1970's to explore a way to examine the life that dancers lead. Then book writers James Kirkwood, Jr. and Nicholas Dante crafted a musical from this wealth of material... (more...)
BWW Review: STAGES St. Louis's Hilarious Must-See 9 TO 5 BWW Review: STAGES St. Louis's Hilarious Must-See 9 TO 5
by Chris Gibson - July 29, 2017

It's not surprising that the 1980 film 9 to 5 was turned into a musical, since it's revenge driven farcical plot is a natural fit, and it's a period piece, so it has that going for it as well. Plus, you have Dolly Parton, whose physical attributes sometimes make one forget how great a songwriter she... (more...)
BWW Review: The MUNY's Amazing and Wonderful THE UNSINKABLE MOLLY BROWN BWW Review: The MUNY's Amazing and Wonderful THE UNSINKABLE MOLLY BROWN
by Chris Gibson - July 25, 2017

Dick Scanlan (revised book and additional lyrics) deserves a hand for the long process that led to a reinvigorated and refocused version of Meredith Willson's THE UNSINKABLE MOLLY BROWN. A few years ago he started tinkering with this venerable classic, having workshops and readings before finally hi... (more...)
BWW Review: The MUNY's Engaging and Lively ALL SHOOK UP BWW Review: The MUNY's Engaging and Lively ALL SHOOK UP
by Chris Gibson - July 14, 2017

ALL SHOOK UP, a celebration of music performed by the King, Elvis Presley, is a entertaining mash-up of Shakespeare's TWELFTH NIGHT, combined with some ideas from FOOTLOOSE, and with just a pinch of the movie version of GREASE (book by Joe DiPietro). I know how that sounds, but instead of taking its... (more...)
BWW Review:  Will Albert Herring ever shed his innocence? BWW Review: Will Albert Herring ever shed his innocence?
by Steve Callahan - July 11, 2017

Union Avenue Opera mounts a delightful production of 'Albert Herring,' Benjamin Britten's only comic opera.... (more...)
BWW Review: The MUNY's Uproarious and Delightful A FUNNY THING HAPPENED ON THE WAY TO THE FORUM BWW Review: The MUNY's Uproarious and Delightful A FUNNY THING HAPPENED ON THE WAY TO THE FORUM
by Chris Gibson - July 09, 2017

Brimming with painfully amusing puns, by gag writers Larry Gelbart and Bert Shevelove , who bring a bit of borscht belt humor and a sprinkling of vaudeville to the proceedings, and adorned with the wonderful music and lyrics of Stephen Sondheim, A FUNNY THING HAPPENED ON THE WAY TO THE FORUM is an i... (more...)
BWW Review: The MUNY's Outstanding and Visually Stunning THE LITTLE MERMAID BWW Review: The MUNY's Outstanding and Visually Stunning THE LITTLE MERMAID
by Chris Gibson - June 26, 2017

It's interesting to imagine just what fairy tale author Hans Christian Andersen would think of the musical version of THE LITTLE MERMAID (book by Doug Wright, music by Alan Menken, and lyrics by Howard Ashman and Glenn Slater) that's now gracing the stage of The MUNY. Though he might quibble with th... (more...)
BWW Review: STAGES St. Louis's Incredibly Fun SEUSSICAL BWW Review: STAGES St. Louis's Incredibly Fun SEUSSICAL
by Chris Gibson - June 26, 2017

There's just something magical about the world of Dr. Seuss and its hold on children. It's the language he uses to tell his fanciful tales. It's re-invented and rhymed in a manner that clearly appeals to children and adults. SEUSSICAL is a catchy and clever musical that adapts various elements from ... (more...)
BWW Review: Two Icons Meet in OTSL's THE TRIAL BWW Review: Two Icons Meet in OTSL's THE TRIAL
by Steve Callahan - June 15, 2017

The American premiere of The Trial has opened at the Opera Theatre of St. Louis. This is a very major event in opera. Franz Kafka's nightmare tale of Joseph K, trapped in an enigmatic trial for his life, has fascinated readers since it appeared in 1925. Composer Philip Glass read the novel as a yout... (more...)
BWW Review: The MUNY Opens Season with Spectacular JESUS CHRIST SUPERSTAR BWW Review: The MUNY Opens Season with Spectacular JESUS CHRIST SUPERSTAR
by Chris Gibson - June 13, 2017

Growing up in the 1970's I can't tell you how many times I came across the boxed LP set, complete with booklet, that housed Tim Rice (lyrics) and Andrew Lloyd Webber's (music) classic, JESUS CHRIST SUPERSTAR. For those of us who grew up on the records, and even the movie version, it was a rock, pop,... (more...)
BWW Review: TITUS at OTSL - Grand Opera With No Deaths, No Vengeance? BWW Review: TITUS at OTSL - Grand Opera With No Deaths, No Vengeance?
by Steve Callahan - June 13, 2017

The Opera Theater of St. Louis has opened the fourth and last production of it's forty-second festival season. It's Mozart's final opera, La clemenza di Tito, or (as it's billed for this English-language performance) simply Titus. Everything about this production - from its glorious voices and orche... (more...)