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Story by Andy Argyrakis
After closing on Broadway earlier this year, the touring company just opened in Chicago for a residency at the Cadillac Palace Theatre, lead by the city's own Eric Petersen in the lead part and the extraordinary Haven Burton as his love interest Princess Fiona. Along with the perfectly paired cast, the show benefits from a colorful storyline that never takes itself too seriously, but still manages to trace the heartwarming journey of a twisted and turned fairly tale.
Outside of the lead characters connecting on a quest to find true love, there's Shrek's talking donkey (played by Alan Migo Jr., who gives the movie's Eddie Murphy a real run for his money), plus a series of freakily tweaked characters from other treasured classics. Some standouts from the plethora of misfits include The Wicked Witch with her long red fingernails, a wise-cracking Pinocchio, a cross dressing Big Bad Wolf and three blind mice (who evoke Diana Ross & the Supremes), making the musical a laugh out loud update on traditional nursery rhymes.
The music is just as attractive thanks to the characters' soaring or soulful pipes, along with so many massive hooks that it's no wonder why the soundtrack scored a Grammy nomination for "Best Musical Show Album." The costumes are even more impressive, from the grumpy turned jolly green giant whom the play's named after, to Lord Farquaad's intentionally ridiculous wigs and fake midget legs (moved around by a kneeling and drop dead hysterical David F.M. Vaughn) to a mechanical dragon that reaches straight up to the rafters. All in all, "Shrek The Musical" is a complete package of love, laughs and looking at life through a left of center lens that champions inner beauty and encourages everyone to celebrate their individuality.
"Shrek The Musical" continues at the Cadillac Palace Theatre through September 5. For additional details, visit www.shrekthemusical.com or www.broadwayinchicago.com
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