Windy City Media Group Frontpage News
Celebrating 30 Years of Gay Lesbian Bisexual and Trans News
home search facebook twitter join
Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2018-10-17
DOWNLOAD ISSUE
About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage

Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor

  WINDY CITY TIMES

THEATER REVIEW Escape to Margaritaville
by Scott C. Morgan, Windy City Times
2017-11-22

facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email


Score: Jimmy Buffett; Book: Greg Garcia & Mike O'Malley

At: Oriental Theatre, 24 W. Randolph St. Tickets: 800-775-2000 or BroadwayinChicago.org; $35-$115. Runs through: Dec. 2

There no doubt about the target audience for Escape to Margaritaville. This Broadway-bound jukebox musical is centered around the tropical rock hits of Jimmy Buffett, and is custom-made to capitalize on his legions of loyal fans, known as "Parrotheads."

So it would be fruitless to try and shush the folks around you throughout the show. They'll instinctively go "ah" or start singing along the instant they recognize the intros to beloved hit songs like "It's Five O'Clock Somewhere," "License to Chill" or "Cheeseburger Paradise."

Escape to Margaritaville isn't a behind-the-music style jukebox show like Jersey Boys. Instead, it's more in the vein of Mamma Mia! where preexisting songs get shoehorned into a new and silly script. Book co-writers Greg Garcia and Mike O'Malley unashamedly show their hands at being huge Buffett fans, which is why so many of Buffett's song lyrics have been re-purposed as dialogue or as character traits.

Escape to Margaritaville centers around the free-loving island troubadour Tully ( Paul Alexander Nolan ), who is surprised when he genuinely starts to romantically fall for the vacationing environmental scientist Rachel ( Alison Luff ). There are also two secondary comic-relief couples: the not-so-bright bartender Brick ( Eric Petersen ) and the weight-watching bride-to-be Tammy ( Lisa Howard ), plus the no-nonsense resort manager Marley ( Rema Webb ) and the perpetually soused island bum J.D. ( Don Sparks ).

Garcia and O'Malley's script does skim some serious issues ( women who are body-shamed, the importance of pursuing dreams over defeatist attitudes ), but Escape to Margaritaville doesn't dramatically delve too deeply. It's as it too much conflict would have been a buzzkill, so let's bring on lots of groan-inducing puns and wacky visual humor in choreographer KellyDevine's tap-dancing production number of zombie insurance salesmen. Yes, you read that right.

If the script is just okay as a sturdy framework for the more famous songs, at least it's all served up well in director Christopher Ashely's professionally competent production. The performers also throw themselves into their roles, digging as deep as they can with such laid-back material.

Whether Escape to Margaritaville proves to be a big hit on Broadway will probably depend on the number of Parrotheads who regularly vacation in New York. But one thing for sure is that Escape to Margaritaville will likely find a receptive future home at any one of Margaritaville-branded resorts in the Caribbean or in the South. That's what you get when a musical feels like yet another entrepreneurial venture for a songwriter/musician who has inspired so many to relax and chill.


facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email





Windy City Media Group does not approve or necessarily agree with the views posted below.
Please do not post letters to the editor here. Please also be civil in your dialogue.
If you need to be mean, just know that the longer you stay on this page, the more you help us.


  ARTICLES YOU MIGHT LIKE

Gay News

WaistWatchers The Musical 2018-10-17 - Playwright: Alan Jacobsen and Vince Dimura At: Royal George Theatre, 1641 N. Halsted St. Tickets: 312-988-9000 or TheRoyalGeorgeTheatre.com; $45-65. Runs through: Dec. 30 ...


Gay News

Flyin' West 2018-10-17 - Playwright: Pearl Cleage At: American Blues Theater, Stage 773, 1225 W. Belmont Ave. Tickets: 773-654-3103; AmericanBluesTheater.com; $19-$39. Runs through: Nov. 3 ...


Gay News


A Shire calling: Gay comedian moves from Chicagoland to LA 2018-10-17 - People often have to make big changes in their lives to order to find success. This is no different with Kyle Shire—a ...


Gay News

Eclipsed 2018-10-17 - Playwright: Danai Gurira At Chicago Dramatists, 1105 W. Chicago Ave. Tickets: $18-30; PegasusTheatreChicago.org. Runs through: Nov. 4 "How you gonna ...


Gay News

Crumbs From the Table of Joy 2018-10-17 - Playwright Lynn Nottage At Raven Theatre, 6157 N Clark St. Tickets: 773-338-2177 or RavenTheatre.com; $15-46. Runs through Nov. 18 Like ...


Gay News

Fun Harmless Warmachine 2018-10-17 - By Fin Coe At Den Theatre, 1331 N. Milwaukee Ave. Tickets: 773-697-3830 or TheNewColony.org; $10-20. Runs through: Nov. 4 The New ...


Gay News

Arts in the Dark Halloween Parade to light up State St. Oct. 20 2018-10-17 - Arts in the Dark, the magical nighttime Halloween procession, will march down State Street for the first time, Saturday, October 20 from 6 ...


Gay News

Too ghoul for school, theater for the Halloween weekend 2018-10-17 - The weeks surrounding Christmas, Hanukah, Kwanzaa, solstice and New Year's are often collectively dubbed the "holiday season" in our multicultural society, but you're ...


Gay News

Illeana Douglas 2018-10-14 - Illeana Douglas is a renaissance woman. Her distinguished career includes theater, standup comedy, movies, including several Martin Scorsese films, TV, writing, music ...


Gay News

Twelve Chicago-based LGBTQ+ performing arts organizations to perform together 2018-10-13 - CHICAGO, October 11, 2018 — Chicago Gay Men's Chorus celebrates 35 years of making music with their upcoming holiday show 35th Anniversary Holiday ...


 



Copyright © 2018 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.

 

 

 

TRENDINGBREAKINGPHOTOS

Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor


 



Sponsor

About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage


About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots      OUT! Guide     
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Subscriptions      Distribution      Windy City Queercast     
Queercast Archives      Advertising  Rates      Deadlines      Advanced Search     
Press  Releases      Event Photos      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Post an Event      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam      Outguide Categories      Outguide Advertisers      Search Outguide      Travel      Dining Out      Blogs      Spotlight  Video     
Classifieds      Real Estate      Place a  Classified     

Windy City Media Group produces Windy City Queercast, & publishes Windy City Times,
The Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community,
Nightspots, Out! Resource Guide, and Identity.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.