Author: Julia Shumway

Fun for the whole family at HCTO’s PETER AND THE STARCATCHER

OREM – We all know the story of Peter Pan: J. M. Barrie’s boy who never grew up, instead leading a band of children on an eternity of adventures with pirates and fairies. What Barrie left out was how Peter got to Neverland and assembled his Lost Boys in the first place. Lucky for us, Dave Barry and Ridley Pearson have written a series of books to fill in the blanks, and playwright Rick Elice has adapted their Peter Pan origin story to the stage. Hale Center Theater Orem brings the critically acclaimed Peter and the Starcatcher from Broadway...

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Westminster’s BELLWETHER is undoubtedly stunning

SALT LAKE CITY — Bellwether is a nice neighborhood. People know their neighbors. The parks have playgrounds for children and tennis courts for adults. Since moving to Bellwether, Alan Draft has taken a new job that pays more, and Jackie Draft has been able to quit working and spend her days at home with their six-year old daughter, Amy. Sure, Alan’s new job and commute keep him away from home for long hours, and Amy is in school during the day, but lonely days are nothing in comparison to all Jackie has to be thankful for. That is until...

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Finding connections in Wasatch Theatre Co’s A BRIGHT NEW BOISE

SALT LAKE CITY — Every job involves some navigation of workplace culture and politics. When Will starts work at the Boise, Idaho, Hobby Lobby, he upsets the store’s daily grind in a way none of his coworkers anticipated. At face value, Will (played by Brian Pilling) is a straight-laced man who left his job at the Coeur d’Alene Albertson’s to move to the big city. Some slight social awkwardness seems like the appropriate response to his eccentric co-workers. We soon learn, though, that Will’s stiffness is more than just first-day jitters. The move to Boise wasn’t inspired simply by a...

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Seeing THE WORST THING I’VE EVER DONE was one of the best things I’ve ever done

SALT LAKE CITY — I’m sitting in a chair next to a large wooden box large enough for two people, wearing some noise cancelling headphones that play The Mountain Goats’ No Children. After a few minutes, another audience member steps out of a door in The Box and hands me a watering can. I take off the headphones and step into The Box, closing the door behind me. Shawn Francis Saunders is already inside, and he launches into a play written by Morag Shepherd. After three minutes (in which the watering can does eventually feature), I step out of the...

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SALT LAKE CITY — The black box theater on the second floor of The Fringe Factory is dark, except for the projection of water rippling on the panels backing the stage. The soft sounds of water continue emanating from the speakers as Ophelia (played by Megan Librizzi) and Hamlet (played by Topher Rasmussen) step onstage. Ophelia wears a white dress and cardigan and picks up flower petals strewn across the stage; Hamlet wears black jeans and a hoodie and sings a melancholy melody, self-accompanied on guitar. When Hamlet finishes his song, the two sit and talk about shared memories, dreams,...

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