Author: C. T. Lewis

A BRIGHT STAR indeed at Pioneer Theatre

SALT LAKE CITY — Soon audiences will have many chances to see Bright Star in this state. Local companies, recognizing the musical’s appeal to Utah patrons, will be quick to secure the performance rights as soon as they become available. Before long, it will be coming to a Hale Centre Theatre or arts council near you. But you will never again have the opportunity to see it like this. The national tour currently playing at Pioneer Theatre features the show’s radiant original star, Carmen Cusack, who is reprising her Tony-nominated role as Alice Murphy before saying farewell to the production...

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UTBA reviewers sound off: EXCELLENCE IN 2017

With the end of the year upon us, it’s time for one of our favorite annual traditions: the UTBA post about excellence on the Utah stage in the past year! These shows are not necessarily the “best” Utah stage productions of the year. Rather, they are plays that stick out in our reviewers’ minds for various reasons. There are plenty of excellent productions that do not appear on this list, and most reviewers were forced to limit the number of plays they talked about. Excellent professional (Equity) productions Some day, Newsies might replace Joseph… as Utah’s favorite musical. The...

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SLAC’s 3 LITTLE PIGS is true, depending on your point of view

SALT LAKE CITY — If you have been or had a kid since 1989, you’re probably familiar with Jon Scieszka and Lane Smith’s children’s book The True Story of the 3 Little Pigs, which retells the classic story from the wolf’s perspective. If you’re among the uninitiated, however, you might think of this musical adaptation by Paul Gilvary, Robert Kauzlaric, and William Rush like this: It’s a little bit Wicked, in its attempts to make moral ambiguities palatable enough for a younger crowd, and a little bit The Mystery of Edwin Drood, for its employment of both the show-within-a-show conceit and...

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A transcendent INTO THE WOODS at BYU

PROVO — I’m not going to bury the lede. I loved this show. I confess I love Sondheim—to an evangelical degree, even. So you might think I would be predisposed to like this production of Into the Woods. In fact, the opposite is true. If anything, my zeal for Sondheim makes me inclined to be hard on companies when they don’t do his work justice, and I took my seat at BYU’s Pardoe Theatre with apprehension. Yet, for all that, this is easily the best show I have seen on a Utah stage in the last year, and probably...

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The Zig’s GUYS AND DOLLS has chance and chemistry

OGDEN — When I was thirteen, I was ecstatic to be cast in my first play, a local production of Guys and Dolls. I was cast as a waiter, but when the actor chosen to play Benny Southstreet failed to show up on the first day of rehearsal, I was promoted on the spot. This was my first time at the Ziegfeld Theater in Ogden, and it instantly took me back to that community theatre—a converted space, hand-painted flats, creative casting, and a local crowd. I remember it fondly as a lot of fun and a baptism by fire, but...

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