After a short stint as part of the Encores! concert series at New York City Center, this revival of “Into The Woods” transferred to Broadway and now, the national tour has made it to Chicago — with all of its magic intact. The musical weaves together the stories of various fairytale characters and explores what happens after “happily ever after.”
Given its premiere as a concert, this tour is a sparse production with little scenery to distract from the plentiful talent onstage. Unfortunately for many fans, Stephanie J. Block was out for this evening’s performance and is expected to remain on vocal rest through the weekend.
The show was still in capable hands with her understudy, Ximone Rose, who delivered a comedic and touching performance. And yet, the understudy who deserves the most praise for the evening’s performance is Ellie Fishman. The show began with Fishman filing in as Lucinda. After the opening number, the stage manager announced that due to an illness, Fishman would be stepping into the role of Cinderella for the remainder of the show (with Erica Durham then taking over as Lucinda). Cinderella’s next entrance is rushing onto the stage in a ballgown and tripping down the stairs. Her first line, “I just need to catch my breath,” was met with a roaring ovation. With next to no notice, Fishman was Cinderella and didn’t miss a beat, her crystal clear voice perfect for the role.
There were no shortage of highlights in this show. The scene-stealing cow, Milky White, puppeteered by Kennedy Kanagawa. A knife-wielding, not-having-it Little Red Riding Hood played by Katy Geraghty. Montego Glover’s powerful “Last Midnight.” Gavin Creel making the most of each and every comedic opportunity as Cinderella’s Prince Charming.
Cost of a ticket: $52 (Balcony) to $116 (Orchestra Center)
PlaylistHQ Economic Rating: Worth It
Rating Scale: Exceptional Value > Worth It > Half Price > Go for Free > Don’t Bother
Get tickets now for Into the Woods through May 7th!