Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Pop! Six! Squish!

I'll start with a warning: if you see Chicago The Musical, you will undoubtedly spend a minimum of a month with the songs in your head. Heed my words! You'll sing All That Jazz in the shower and shimmy to Cell Block Tango while spring cleaning. You'll puppeteer We Both Reached for the Gun and end your day contemplating Mr. Cellophane. In fact, it's been six years since I've seen it performed live, but as soon as I found out that Broadway Grand Rapids was bringing it to West Michigan in May, it's been a nonstop vaudeville extravaganza in my brain.

The award-winning musical is set in the seedy streets of prohibition era Chicago, where the call of booze and jazz is too hard to resist, especially for Roxie Hart who longs for excitement and fame far more than a quiet life with husband Amos. Unfortunately for her (and even more so for lover Fred), she ends up with a smoking pistol and a spot in the big house with Matron "Mama" Morton's merry murderesses. Soon, she finds herself to be a media darling, a celebrity criminal, stealing the spotlight - and lawyer - from Velma Kelly, a vaudeville star similarly on trial for the events following finding her husband spread eagle with her sister.

This world of razzle-dazzle is made even more incredible by the fact that it was ripped straight out of the Chicago Tribune's headlines in 1924. Reporter Maurine Dallas Watkins sensationalized the trials of Beulah Annan (the basis for Roxie) and Belva Gaertner (Velma). With her column's success, she wrote a play on the two, which made its way to Broadway for 172 performances and eventually became the musical applauded by today's audiences.

If you'd been there, if you'd seen it... Experience the topsy turvey world of Chicago for yourself as it hits the Broadway Grand Rapids stage May 10 -11. Just tell us what your favorite play is, and you could have two of the hottest tickets in town. The winner will be picked on Friday, April 8.

Jazz hands,



Tverma29 said...

Favorite stage play would have to be Wicked. I've seen the show performed by several casts all over the country - I loved it!

Chicago runs a close second, though. You're spot on when you say you'll be singing the songs for at least a week after!


Ethan B. said...

Phantom of the Opera is my favorite I believe. I have never seen Chicago but I have always wanted to!

Melanie said...

I love so many Broadway shows, but I think my favorite is Les Miserables. I also enjoyed Chicago and would love to take a friend who has never seen it.

Samantha said...

My favorite musical would have to be RENT. I've seen it twice, once with 2 of the original cast members! It was incredible.

I've never seen Chicago live, but I'm in love with the movie and the music and it would be amazing to win tickets to see it!

patty said...

Wicked!! I have seen it twice....sooo much fun! Love love love Chicago and would love to see it again!

Sheryl said...

I love GREASE!

Interactive said...
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Christa said...

My Favorite is Wicked! I have seen it three times now, and I'm planning to go see it again.

But really... musicals = love. All of them.

I haven't seen Chicago on stage yet, but I LOVE the movie!

jeff said...

I'd have to say my favorite is "Fiddler on the Roof" . . . "If I were a rich man. . . "

Brendan said...

My favorite play is Wicked. My girlfriend took me to see it and it was amazing! I'd love to be able to pay her back with tickets to Chicago!

BeckyNeighbor said...

I loved Chicago so much the last time I saw it. But my all-time favorite is Les Miserables.