Tony-Winning Once Makes Music in Illinois

Playbill, May 2018 — Done on a tiny budget of $150,000, the independent Irish film Once barely made it into theaters. And it easily could have disappeared without a trace, but audiences were captivated by its simple story about two musicians writing songs together and falling in love. After it screened at the Sundance Film Festival… Continue reading Tony-Winning Once Makes Music in Illinois

Lorin Latarro’s A Taste of Things to Come Captures the Inception of Feminism

Playbill, March 2018 — Cooking contests are an American pastime. After a long history of local bake-offs at county fairs and churches around the country, competitions hit the big time in 1949, when Pillsbury held its first national recipe contest. During that prosperous post-World War II era, Americans were watching television for the first time… Continue reading Lorin Latarro’s A Taste of Things to Come Captures the Inception of Feminism

Why This Chicago Theatre Put a Modern Spin on The Emperor’s New Clothes—With the Help of Ahrens and Flaherty

Playbill, March 4, 2018 — Imagine you’re a child watching a live theatrical performance for the first time. You’ve seen plenty of movies and television shows, but this is something new and exciting — actual people walking, talking, dancing and singing on a stage, conjuring the illusion of a story right in front of your eyes.… Continue reading Why This Chicago Theatre Put a Modern Spin on The Emperor’s New Clothes—With the Help of Ahrens and Flaherty

Why Escape to Margaritaville Won’t Be Just Another Juke-Box Musical

Playbill, November 2017 — The first time Jimmy Buffett saw a rehearsal of Escape to Margaritaville, the new musical based on his songs, it was pretty obvious that he was having a good time. “He was smiling and laughing,” recalls Greg Garcia, co-writer of the musical’s book, who was sitting just in front of Buffett. “I… Continue reading Why Escape to Margaritaville Won’t Be Just Another Juke-Box Musical

Why Newsies’ Regional Premiere Is Unlike Any Other Staging of the Tony-Winning Musical

Playbill, October 2017 — People love to root for the underdog. And who’s more of an underdog than a ragtag kid shouting “Extra!, Extra!” as he sells newspapers on the crowded streets of a big, dirty city? That’s a big part of the appeal of Newsies. “It is an immigrant story,” says Aaron Thielen, artistic… Continue reading Why Newsies’ Regional Premiere Is Unlike Any Other Staging of the Tony-Winning Musical