Tag: Carol Rosegg

Review: Finding Neverland (Broadway in Chicago)

Finding Neverland cast, Broadway Chicago (photo Carol Rosegg)           
         

Finding Neverland

By James Graham (book), and
 Gary Barlow, Eliot Kennedy (music, lyrics) 
Cadillac Palace Theatre, 151 W. Randolph (map)
thru Dec 4  |  tix: $34-$115  |  more info
       
Check for half-price tickets   
     

November 29, 2016 | 0 Comments More

Review: West Side Story (Broadway in Chicago, US Tour)

Addison Reid Coe and MaryJoanna Grisso stars as Tony and Maria in Broadway in Chicago's "West Side Story" by Stephen Sondheim and Leonard Bernstein, directed by David Saint. (photo credit: Carol Rosegg)        
       
West Side Story  

Arthur Laurents (book), Leonard Bernstein (music)
     and Stephen Sondheim (lyrics)
Directed by David Saint
at Oriental Theatre, 24 W. Randolph (map)
thru June 16  |  tickets: $18-$85   |  more info
       
Check for half-price tickets 
    
        
        Read entire review
     

June 13, 2013 | 0 Comments More

Review: Catch Me If You Can (Broadway in Chicago)

Stephany Anthony stars as Frank Abagnale, Jr. in Broadway in Chicago's "Catch Me If You Can" by Terrence McNally, Scott Wittman and Marc Shaiman, directed by Jack O'Brien. (photo credit: Carol Rosegg)        
       
Catch Me If You Can 

By Terrence McNally (book), Scott Wittman (lyrics)
    and Marc Shaiman (music and co-lyrics)
Directed by Jack O’Brien
Cadillac Palace Theatre, 151 W. Randolph (map)
thru April 14  |  tickets: $18-$85   |  more info
       
Check for half-price tickets 
    
        
        Read entire review
     

April 4, 2013 | 2 Comments More

Review: Potted Potter (Broadway Playhouse)

Daniel Clarkson and Jefferson Turner star in Broadway in Chicago's "Potted Potter", directed by Richard Hurst. (photo credit: Carol Rosegg)        
      
Potted Potter 

Written and performed by Daniel Clarkson 
      and Jefferson Turner
Directed by Richard Hurst 
Broadway Playhouse, 175 E. Chestnut (map)
thru Dec 16  |  tickets: $40-$85   |  more info
       
Check for half-price tickets 
    
        
        Read entire review
     

November 19, 2012 | 0 Comments More

Review: Freud’s Last Session (Mercury Theater)

(L-R) Mark H. Dold and Martin Rayner as C.S. Lewis and Sigmund Freud, in Mercury Theater's "Freud's Last Session" by Mark St. Germain. (photo credit: Carol Rosegg)       
     
Freud’s Last Session

Written by Mark St. Germain  
Directed by Tyler Marchant
at Mercury Theater, 3745 N. Southport (map)
thru June 3  |  tickets: $45-$55   |  more info
       
Check for half-price tickets 
    
        
        Read entire review
     

March 27, 2012 | 5 Comments More

Review: A Christmas Story the Musical! (Chicago Theatre)

Clarke Hallum as Ralphie Parker - A Christmas Story       
      
A Christmas Story 

Book by Joseph Robinette  
Music/Lyrics by Benj Pasek and Justin Paul
Directed by John Rando
at The Chicago Theatre, 175 N. State (map)
thru Dec 30  |  tickets: $35-$79   |  more info
       
Check for half-price tickets 
    
        
        Read entire review
     

December 15, 2011 | 0 Comments More

Review: Fiddler on the Roof (Broadway in Chicago)

John Preece as Tevye of Fiddler on the Roof       
      
Fiddler on the Roof 

By Joseph Stein (book), Jerry Bock (music),
   and Sheldon Harnick (lyrics)
Directed by Sammy Dallas Bayes
Auditorium Theatre, 50 E. Congress (map)
thru Nov 27  |  tickets: $26-$85   |  more info

Check for half-price tickets 
    
        
        Read entire review
     

November 25, 2011 | 1 Comment More

Review: White Noise (Royal George and Whoopi Goldberg)

        
        

Though it doesn’t quite rock the hard place, it still rocks

  
  

MacKenzie Mauzy and the ensemble in Whoopi Goldberg's 'White Noise' at the Royal George Theatre in Chicago.

  
Whoopi Goldberg presents
  
White Noise: a cautionary musical
  
Book by Matte O’Brien
Music/Lyrics by
Robert Morris, Steven Morris, Joe Shane
Directed and choreographed  by
Sergio Trujillo
at Royal George Theatre, 1641 N. Halsted (map)
through June 5  |  tickets: $50-$65  |  more info

Reviewed by Barry Eitel

Neo-Nazism, maybe now more than ever, is definitely a lonely philosophy, with both sides of the political spectrum trigger-happy to brand their opponents as followers of the Fuhrer. Unlike the more fashionable discrimination against Latinos, Muslims, and gays, wholesale white supremacy is not in vogue these days. White Noise, the new “cautionary musical” produced by Whoopi Goldberg, asks what would happen if subtle and coded racist rhetoric went viral? It’s already sort of happening over on 4Chan; in this way, Matte O’Brien’s book is screamingly relevant. He’s assisted by well-wrought, if often disturbing, songs and Sergio Trujillo’s snappy staging. However, by using tired Nazi philosophy Emily Padgett and MacKenzie Mauzy in Whoopi Goldberg's 'White Noise' at the Royal George Theatreas its punching bag, White Noise fails to present a nuanced reflection on racism in today’s America—something we desperately need.

The events of the play were inspired by a little duo of white nationalists who formed a band called Prussian Blue. The two tween girls sang about race wars and crushes on skinheads, nearly immediately gaining the ire, and spotlight, of the national media. However, the pinnacle of Prussian Blue’s career was playing a state fair or two. The titular band in White Noise is sexier, more talented, and more marketable—singing their ciphered bigotry, they become YouTube darlings and put out a number one single.

One wonders how their repulsive beliefs are kept hidden from the media – something the show never explains. In fact, you aren’t really told much about how those beliefs came to be; there is never the searing indictment of inherited racism you find in American History X.

What we’re left with is the terrifically short rise and fall of White Noise, which is comprised of sisters Eva and Eden (Mackenzie Mauzy and Emily Padgett), skinhead/bassist/Eva’s boyfriend Duke (Patrick Murney), and Jake (Eric William Morris), who’s slapped onto the band by record exec Max (Douglas Sills as a lukewarm Bobby Gould-lite) with the mission of repackaging the group. The show becomes a battle between the greed of the amoral Max and Duke’s desire to vocalize his disgusting views on a national platform. Eva and Eden are caught in the crossfire. Eden just writes the tunes; she’s never really that concerned with the message. Eva fully believes the stuff, but she’s also a capitalist.

This story is juxtaposed with Max and Jake’s attempts to repackage backpack rappers Dion (Wallace Smith) and Tyler (Rodney Hicks) as gangstas. It doesn’t help that the two’s original ideas are pretty lame (like a rap version of the Declaration of Independence – not kidding), lacking the intelligence of Lupe Fiasco or De La Soul. Against their will, Max turns them into Blood Brothers and Jake writes them a little tune called “N.G.S.,” a smash hit about N’s (think N.W.A.) shooting “white boys.” Obviously, Jake and Max are guilty of racist double-dipping, but Max could care less and Jake is concerned with making his career. The whole musical leads up to a giant concert featuring a double bill of White Noise and Blood Brothers. Needless to say, it doesn’t go down as smooth as “Ebony and Ivory.”

     
Eric Morris, Emily Padgett, MacKenzie Mauzy, Patrick Murney in Whoopi Goldberg's 'White Noise' at the Royal George Theatre
Rodney Hicks and Wallace Smith as the "BloodBrothas" in Whoopi Goldberg's 'White Noise' at the Royal George Theatre in Chicago. MacKenzie Mauzy and Emily Padgett in Whoopi Goldberg's 'White Noise' at the Royal George Theatre

Mauzy and Padgett give great performances and nail the musical numbers. Their tunes, penned by Robert Morris, Steven Morris, and Joe Shane, are legitimately catchy. Murney is chilling and Morris, who becomes the romantic lead in this tale, is decent. Max is a wannabe Mamet character who just isn’t quite ballsy enough, but Sills does the best he can.

I have to give props to this show – which has Broadway-level production design – for not shying away from the vile language. The show may be as blunt as Nazi propaganda. It presents racism in a polarized manner that doesn’t speak to the insidious, quieter racism that we see today. But White Noise still asks some relevant questions. The Hitler salute-inspired choreography in the video of White Noise’s hit single, “Mondays Suck,” inspire rounds of fan vids on YouTube, a la “Single Ladies.” At the end of the night, I was wondering how stupid all those kids must feel after they realize they posted videos of themselves goose-stepping.

  
  
Rating: ★★★
  
  

Eric Morris, Emily Padgett, MacKenzie Mauzy, Patrick Murney in Whoopi Goldberg's 'White Noise' at the Royal George Theatre

White Noise: a cautionary musical continues at the Royal George Theatre through June 5th, with performances Tuesday-Thursday at 7:30pm, Fridays 8pm, Saturdays 5pm and 8pm, and Sundays at 2pm and 5pm. Tickets are $49.50-$64.50, and can be purchased online or via the box office (312-988-9000). For more info, download the

.

All photos by Carol Rosegg

     
April 16, 2011 | 0 Comments More