Author: jgibbons

Let Down Your Hair and Enjoy UCT’s RAPUNZEL

SOUTH SALT LAKE CITY — “Rapunzel, Rapunzel, let down your hair!” Everyone knows the line and the story, so the actual plot of Utah Children’s Theatre’s Rapunzel is nothing new. What sets this production apart, however, is the way the familiar fairytale is brought to life, allowing children and children at heart to be immersed in the world of the girl with the long, golden hair. The main quality that kept UCT’s play from falling flat is the energy and commitment of the actors. Director Meighan Smith did a great job taking the (uncredited) script, shaping the cast to work together, and focusing on the audience members that matter most—the children. The actors played to the kids, from silly moments like when Mother Gothel farts (my seven-year-old son appreciated that one) to relatable moments, such as the over-the-top excitement of making a friend during Rapunzel and Evan’s first meeting in the woods. With just a five-person cast, the success of Rapunzel relied heavily on every single cast member. Though playing the villain, Robert Fernandez was my favorite of the night as he fully embraced both the humor and horror of Mother Gothel. The funniest parts in the play happened thanks to Fernandez’s Gothel, which included well-delivered, snarky asides and physical humor, such as fainting and walking in an “old lady” manner. The scariest parts of the play also happened thanks...

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A lot to love in HCT’s SHE LOVES ME

WEST VALLEY CITY — I love romantic comedies. To me there is nothing quite so comforting than (re)watching my favorite rom-coms, stopping and rewinding scenes over and over. True, I enjoy other genres of film and am a lover of the stage, but well-worm romantic comedies—While You Were Sleeping, Sweet Home Alabama, The Proposal—draw me in with great characters and humor, then hook me with the sweet, heartwarming, and yes, often sappy romance. Thanks to Hale Centre Theatre, I have discovered a new gem to add to my rom-com collection, a stage musical I wish I could watch on...

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Catch the “Spark of Creation” at CenterPoint’s CHILDREN OF EDEN

CENTERVILLE — It is astounding to me how immense the world of theatre seems to be—with so much to offer and an abundance of new material constantly being created. Yet so many theatre companies focus on the same old shows, the beloved classics. I love a classic show every now and then—and really, I can never get too much of a well-done The Music Man or My Fair Lady—but it is always refreshing when a theatre company decides to sidestep the norm and produce a lesser-known show. Such was the case with Centerpoint Legacy Theatre’s choice to present Stephen Schwartz’s...

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Olio saves Desert Star’s PROVOCOP from danger

MURRAY — Let’s just get it out there: though I’ve enjoyed Desert Star productions in the past, their current production, ProvoCop, is not a show I want to see again. But as any former patron of the playhouse can tell you, the play isn’t the only performance of the night. After ProvoCop comes the Prom Night Olio, a skit and song musical review focusing on—you guessed it—the prom. The humor (I believe I snorted at least twice) and chemistry of the actors during the Prom Night Olio was a direct contrast to the flat, drawn-out, and frankly boring ProvoCop...

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Have a blast at CPT’s FOREVER PLAID

CENTERVILLE — I had the opportunity to watch Forever Plaid for the first time at CenterPoint Legacy Theatre on Wednesday of its opening week. Though I was not blown away by the underlying material, the performances were overall solid and the show was definitely a fun experience. First, a little background. Forever Plaid is a musical revue written by Stuart Ross, featuring the barbershop quartet-style men groups of the 1950’s. Though the tone of the musical is light overall, it begins with the death of the four men in the barbershop group, “The Plaids.” The show fast forwards fifty-plus years to...

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