Broadway tour ‘Charlie and the Chocolate Factory’ deliciously satisfies audience cravings by Philip Potempa I grew up with “Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory” as one of my favorite childhood movies. It was released in 1971, just one year after I was born, and just having the word chocolate in the film title was enough to get most any child’s attention and admiration for this story with so many lessons, all originally shared in author Roald Dahl‘s delicious 1964 book “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.” I’ve spent the past few years eagerly following the recipe for long-awaited release for...Read More
Funny and likeable ‘Tootsie’ dressed and ready for New York Broadway bow by Philip Potempa When the 1982 film “Tootsie” showed up on the big screen in movie theaters, with larger-than-life funny characters mixed-up in screwball comedy life situations, I remember my parents taking myself and my siblings to see the box office hit. It had an all-star cast with Dustin Hoffman as the title character joined by Teri Garr, Jessica Lange, Bill Murray and Dabney Coleman. Broadway In Chicago and Scott Sanders Productions have united to welcome “Tootsie” back as a new Broadway comedy musical to introduce this...Read More
‘Legally Blonde’ at Paramount Theatre is pink perfection by Philip Potempa Paramount Theatre in Aurora has launched its eighth Broadway Series season with a pink perspective beaming with audience appeal. “Legally Blonde – The Musical,” which had original bows in New York on Broadway when unveiled in 2007, is playing through Oct. 21 at Paramount Theatre, 23 E. Galena Blvd., now billed as the most heavily subscribed theater in Chicago and the second largest in the nation.” This new production is reimagined with some clever “accessorized” updates by Trent Stork, a veteran of 15 productions and casting director at...Read More
‘Anything Goes’ at Music Theater Works is a splashy sensation by Philip Potempa The best reminder of the creative and clever genius mind of Hoosier claim-to-fame Cole Porter is his 1934 musical stage comedy “Anything Goes.” The last time I caught a run of “Anything Goes” it was the Spring 2013 national Broadway tour of the revival hit which played a two-week May run at Cadillac Palace Theatre, introducing Porter’s tunes to new generations. It starred Rachel York in the spicy Ethel Merman-made-famous role of nightclub star Reno Sweeney during this tour as produced by New York City’s Roundabout Theatre Company. The tour was based on the...Read More
New national Broadway tour for ‘The Color Purple’ a simple sensation by Philip Potempa I’m amazed it’s been nearly a decade since the last time a national Broadway tour of “The Color Purple” came to Chicago. Knowing that a new national tour would be playing a limited two-week July run in the Windy City, I had been telling others, “Yep, it’s been a few years since it was last here.” In reality, the last visit was more than “a few years.” It was 2009, and it was at the 4,000 seat Arie Crown Theater at McCormick Place in Chicago for...Read More
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Philip Potempa, a 25-year Chicago veteran journalist, writes about what others are talking about to keep readers informed about the hottest tickets (and topics) in town and beyond.
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- REVIEW: Broadway tour ‘Charlie and the Chocolate Factory’ deliciously satisfies audience cravings
- REVIEW: Funny and likeable ‘Tootsie’ dressed and ready for New York Broadway bow
- REVIEW: ‘Legally Blonde’ at Paramount Theatre is pink perfection
- REVIEW: ‘Anything Goes’ at Music Theater Works is a splashy sensation
- REVIEW: New national Broadway tour for ‘The Color Purple’ a simple sensation