Tuacahn – Broadway in the Desert

I normally don’t write reviews of shows I’ve seen because they are short runs or I saw them toward the end of the run when my review and input would be too late for people to act. However, my trip to St. George last weekend included to shows – “Mary Poppins” and “Thoroughly Modern Millie” – which run through October, so there’s plenty of time for people to take my review into account.

What is Tuacahn?

In a small canyon in the suburb of Ivins is a magical place called Tuacahn, an outdoor amphitheater that puts on world-class productions of Broadway shows. The cast comes from all across the country, many coming from the “Great White Way” to be a part of these summer productions. Being outdoors allows for some awesome things like fireworks and a spectacular backdrop of red canyon walls. Anyway, with my favorite show “Mary Poppins” playing I had to make the trip somehow, which in the end yielded tickets to the first preview of “Thoroughly Modern Millie.”

Practically perfect

5 July 2013 Tuacahn Mary Poppins (1)I love Mary Poppins! I saw it twice in New York and the national tour in Dallas and now at Tuacahn. Each time I left feeling so good about life. There’s no better entertainment than that which lifts your spirits and helps you see good in the world. That feeling didn’t change with this most recent viewing because the story and music are so solid. However, the show wasn’t perfect.

      • The Bad
          • There were hiccups with some of the effects in the set
          • They added random things that were just corny like a person in a penguin outfit for “Jolly Holiday”
          • “Playing the Game” – this isn’t just Tuacahn’s problem, but the national tour’s as well; “Temper, Temper” is such a better song and has a purpose
      • The Good
          • The cast was fantastic
              • Mary is double-cast. The night we went she was played by Mindy Smoot who gave the role so much emotion I haven’t seen before
              • Bert was fantastic!
              • Michael is played by a six-year-old boy name Grant. He is the best Michael Banks I’ve seen even if he missed a bit of the choreography once or twice. He had the lines down pat and was so convincing.
          • Outstanding dancing and singing
          • They were able to make some of the more spectacular special effects work like Bert’s gravity defying tap dance and Mary’s high-flying arrivals and departures

To wrap it up, it’s a fantastic show and very worth seeing. You won’t regret spending a few hours with Mary, Bert, the Banks family and all of the rest of the “Mary Poppins” characters. It truly is a jolly holiday with Mary.

“Mary Poppins” is playing Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays through October 25.

Thoroughly Entertaining

6 July 2013 Tuacahn MillieThanks to my friend in the cast, we got tickets to the first preview of “Thoroughly Modern Millie.” Before this I was only familiar with a couple of the songs. I didn’t know the story or really anything other than small-town girl tries to make it in NYC. Well, this show is so full of unexpected twists and turns it makes for a fun night.

      • The Bad
          • It was a preview, the first one, so some of the sets weren’t finished and the cast was still figuring a few things out
      • The Good
          • It was a preview but the cast did great, so I can only imagine how good it will be when it officially opens and all the kinks are worked out
          • Fabulous dancing and music
          • Their set is going to be fantastic even though it wasn’t finished yet

Loved it! “Thoroughly Modern Millie” is a fun show even though it has the most peculiar plot twists.

“Thoroughly Modern Millie” is sharing Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays with “Starlight Express” through October 24.

This season Tuacahn is also running “Mulan” in their indoor theater. Also, “Elf” will be playing in December at the Cox Auditorium in St. George. You can find the complete schedule of shows and get tickets on their website.

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