and choreographed by Michael Bennett
Book by James Kirkwood & Nicholas Dante
Music by Marvin Hamlisch
Lyrics by Edward Kleban
Directed by Mark Lococo
Choreographed by Rachel Rockwell
Musical Direction by Ryan T. Nelson
At Marriott Theatre , Lincolnshire
“The show is dedicated to anyone who has ever danced in a chorus or marched in step…anywhere.” –Michael Bennett
Stunning tribute to the dreams of all who create performing art
A Chorus Line is the greatest backstage musical ever – and one of the finest dance shows ever! The 1975 show won 9 Tony’s and a Pulitzer as it run for 6, 137 performance – a record at the time. It was Michael Bennett, Marvin Hamlisch and Edward Kleban’s masterwork. A Chorus Line is a simple yet telling work about a group of dancers, “gypsies” who are auditioning for a spot in the chorus of a new Broadway show.
We follow the audition process that finds Zach, the director (Tim Gregory) looking for more than merely four boys and four girls to dance in the chorus. They need to play small roles so he wants each to tell their story so he can get a glimpse of their personalities. This results in the most honest, true-to-life Broadway musical ever mounted. We empathize and share the dreams, hopes and struggles of these committed artists. We share their passion for art and we understand their courage and sacrifice for the sake of performing- of creating art.
A Chorus Line is a ode to all artists, all souls who live to create. The dialogue at the show end, just before the anthem to all artists/performers “What I did For Love,” aptly tells of the motivation and resolve of these ‘gypsies’ of the stage. A Chorus Line has a powerful brassy score by Marvin Hamlisch that gives the fabulous dancers the rhythms to create extraordinary dances. Choreographer Rachel Rockwell has her dancers stretching to new heights with some innovative twists that are thrilling. Director Mark Lococo has cast many young new dancers hungry to win our hearts. These fresh faces give the production an energetic force that resonates.
Mara Davi dances Cassy’s “The Music And the Mirror’ number with passion and style. Tim Gregory plays the demanding director Zach with a fine blend of understanding and toughness. Besides the raw honesty from each character, A Chorus Line is still one of the slickest and most powerful dance shows ever. It was thrilling to witness such dedication and sheer talent doing what they are most passionate about- dancing – performing. The entire cast exuded actual passion as they left all their talent on the stage. It is amazing to me how the cast keeps their energy going for 8 shows a week!
Every young aspiring actor/dancer/performer in Chicago needs to get to Marriott Theatre to get an injection of passion from the cast of A Chorus Line. This is a wonderful spirited and flawless production of a classic Broadway musical. The audience cheered throughout. The thrilling “One” finale almost overwhelms- you’ll be humming it for hours!
At Marriott Theatre in Lincolnshite, Il, RT 45 & RT 22, www.marriotttheatre.com, tickets $35 to $48, Wednesdays at ! & 8 pm, Thursdays & Fridays at 8 pm, Saturdays at 4;30 and 8 pm, Sundays at 1 & 5 pm, running time is 1 hour, 55 minutes with intermission.