The reviews are coming in, and I think we're a HIT!
First, we got this terrific feature story from Judy Newmark in the Sunday Post-Dispatch, a really interesting exploration of RTTFP and its source play and film. She wrote, "Put it all together, and Return to the Forbidden Planet works on multiple levels: literary, pop-cultural and psychological. [Artistic director] Miller thinks that it compares well with Bat Boy and Urinetown, two smart, irreverent shows that go a long way toward defining the New Line point of view."
Judy's Post-Dispatch review of the show hit their website Monday (it was in Tuesday's print edition), and she says, "New Line Theatre presents a lot of intriguing work, but now and then it gets everything so right that you're ready to see the show again before you're out of the theater. Hair was like that; Bat Boy, too. And so is its new production, Return to the Forbidden Planet -- a smart, giddy, musically ingenious spoof written by Bob Carlton and directed by Scott Miller."
Paul Friswold at The Riverfront Times wrote in his Calendar Pimp column, "Remember the halcyon days when we were terrified of the Russians, they were terrified of us, and Shakespeare wrote his first intergalactic R&B hit, 'It's A Man's Man's Man's World?' Sweet fancy Moses, those were the days. Wait, that never happened. Or did it? Yup, looky here: Return to the Forbidden Planet. It's sweet Billy Shakes vs. Golden Oldies vs. Space Age Love Songs. Just what Dr. Tempest ordered." Yes, that about sums it up.
On Wednesday, Friswold reviewed the show, saying, “Bob Carlton's whimsical take on The Tempest as refracted through a 1950s sci-fi prism features a galaxy's worth of fantastic rock & roll songs, punning wordplays on snippets of Shakespearian monologues and intentionally ‘Pigs in Space’ costuming (courtesy of Betsy Krausnick). But this is no parlor trick of a musical; there's a rich vein of Shakespeare's favorite ingredient — the wondrous depths of the human heart — that elevates the show from cunning stunt to artful meditation on the destructive nature of power and the redemptive power of love.”
Chris Gibson's KDHX-FM review said, "Under the guidance of director Scott Miller, New Line Theatre is presenting a thoroughly engaging and enjoyable production. . . This is a fun show, and Miller has assembled a talented cast and crew that seems to be having a blast."
Mark Bretz' Ladue News review says, "New Line artistic director Scott Miller meticulously blends the comic sensibilities of his talented cast with the brisk, jaunty style of the New Line band to make this foray into outer space a campy and delightful journey. There are stars aplenty in this cosmos."
Andrea Braun's Vital Voice review was posted Monday afternoon, which said, "Forbidden Planet plays for laughs, which it receives in abundance."
Also today, someone posted the nicest note to our Facebook page: "We just got back from the show tonight (5/2/09), and it was phenomenal. Best time I've ever had at a local theater performance. The cast, the band, and the sets were dead on. The space and the sound were fantastic. Really, really good job, everyone. It was shlocky, pervy, funny, and rockin'. I could not ask for more."
And neither could we. Thanks to everyone who came out to see us this first weekend. If you haven't seen our show yet, come see us soon!
Long Live the Musical!