Author: elisehanson

Help yourself to a serving of the Grand’s SPAMALOT

SALT LAKE CITY — Fans of Monty Python‘s seminal cinematic classic Monty Python and the Holy Grail will be pleased to know that Eric Idle‘s loving re-imagining of the film is getting worthy treatment from the collection of comic actors at The Grand Theatre. Spamalot is the fantastically irreverent and garishly glitzy take on Holy Grail’s story of King Arthur’s holy quest for the aforementioned cup. The musical retains some favorite bits and gags from the movie (such as the killer bunny rabbit and the taunting Frenchman), while adding a wonderful comedic character in The Lady of the Lake (played by Olivia Custodio). The songs, brilliantly penned by...

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Get shaken awake by Westminster’s SPRING AWAKENING

SALT LAKE CITY — Frank Wedekind was a 19th-century German playwright whose seminal 1891 work Frühlings Erwachen was adapted into a modern musical called Spring Awakening by dramatist Steven Sater and composer Duncan Sheik. The controversial work 100 years prior to the Broadway smash hit was revived to enormous success and remarkable effect; the problems facing the teenagers of 1890 are frighteningly similar to those facing our youth today, keeping the story of Spring Awakening as evocative and heartfelt as ever. In many ways, the students in the world of Spring Awakening are startlingly similar to the impassioned activists of Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. Both...

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SLAC presents a fascinating mess in HIR

SALT LAKE CITY — This small California home is a mess. There is laundry littering the floor, rubbish piled up so high by the front door that it is impassable, and whoever approaches the sink is going to have to don a hazmat suit. Not a great place to come home to for young soldier Isaac Conner, played by Austin Archer. He shouts at the front door while his wacky mom tries to explain through zany, mad-cap metaphor that he needs to use the back door. Christy Summerhays is Paige Conner, a veritable lava lamp come to life. Her husband...

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See the light of ANGELS IN AMERICA: MILLENNIUM APPROACHES

PROVO — Since their debut at the Salt Lake Fringe Festival in 2015, An Other Theater Company has been producing bold, compassionate, and inclusive pieces of live entertainment that make me excited for the Utah theater scene. I was able to enjoy their latest production, Angels in America: Millennium Approaches (the first half of Tony Kushner‘s landmark play), and I am pleased to say that their standard for excellence and empathy is still raising the bar for similar companies. Kushner’s Angels in America: A Gay Fantasia on National Themes (with its two parts, Millennium Approaches and Perestroika) is a hallmark of theatrical achievement. It...

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CHARLIE AND THE CHOCOLATE FACTORY is a sweet and silly surprise

SOUTH SALT LAKE — Utah Children’s Theatre is something of an institution in the Salt Lake Valley, churning out lively theater capable of drawing the attention of young children while introducing a level of talent and entertainment to interest adults. Upon my first visit to this little theater in South Salt Lake, I was delighted to find that the rumors are true: UCT is a charming place. Charlie and the Chocolate  Factory is a familiar story with a book by Roald Dahl, and already adapted into two films, so I shan’t bore our readers with a recap. This theatrical version by...

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