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  Carousel at Lyric Opera

Carousel

Lyric Opera
20 N. Wacker Drive Chicago

Experience Rodgers and Hammerstein's Carousel, which Time magazine called the best musical of the century. Swaggering, carefree carnival barker Billy captivates and marries naive millworker Julie. Losing his job just as he learns that Julie is pregnant, Billy, desperate to provide a decent life for his family, is coerced into being an accomplice to a robbery. Caught in the act and facing prison, he takes his own life and is sent "up there." Returning to earth for one day 15 years later, Billy encounters the daughter he never knew. A lonely, friendless teenager, her father's reputation as a thief and a bully has haunted her throughout her young life. How Billy instills in both the child and her mother a sense of hope and dignity is a dramatic testimony to the power of love. It's easy to understand why, of all the shows they created, Carousel was Rodgers and Hammerstein's personal favorite.

Thru - May 3, 2015



Price: $29-$199

Show Type: Musical

Box Office: 312-332-2244

Running Time: 3hrs; one intermission


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  Carousel Reviews
  • Highly Recommended
  • Recommended
  • Somewhat Recommended
  • Not Recommended

Chicago Tribune - Highly Recommended

"...Other pleasures abound in the casting, ranging from Denyce Graves' spectacular rendition of "You'll Never Walk Alone" to Tony Roberts' avuncular but unsentimental turn as the Starkeeper. As played by Jenn Gambatese (whose initial yearning for marriage is very moving) and Matthew Hydzik (who is surprisingly unpredictable, vocally and dramatically), the generally comic couple of Carrie Pipperidge and Enoch Snow are played as far more of a fractured couple than is typical. The gags are still there, but you also get a strong sense that even in seemingly respectable marriages women have disappointments."
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Chris Jones


Chicago Sun Times - Recommended

"...Rodgers and Hammerstein 's "Carousel" is the musical that takes us for a spin around the dark side of the American dream. And the new Lyric Opera production of this 1945 Broadway classic - a show whose score is widely familiar even if revivals are relatively rare - drives home the notion that while there is much to celebrate in life, there is much that is desperate, tawdry, cruel and unfair."
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Hedy Weiss


Chicago Reader - Highly Recommended

"...Broadway veteran Charlotte d'Amboise shines as Billy's sometime lover and employer Mrs. Mullin-a traditionally secondary role that Ashford has beefed up by using d'Amboise's skills as a dancer as well as actress. Also excellent is former Joffrey and American Ballet Theatre dancer Abigail Simon as Billy and Julie's troubled teenage daughter, Louise. And it is wonderful to hear Rodgers's rich score delivered by an opera-company chorus and orchestra under David Chase's baton. The weak link, unfortunately, is Steven Pasquale's Billy. Seeking a more naturalistic approach to the traditionally flamboyant character, Pasquale (despite his fine singing) ends up failing to connect with either his leading ladies or the audience. This Bigelow needs more big to complement the low."
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Albert Williams


Talkin Broadway - Highly Recommended

"...With the high powered cast of Broadway veterans that director Rob Ashford has assembled for this Carousel—Steven Pasquale, Laura Osnes, Jenn Gambatese, Matthew Hydzik, Jerrod Emick, Charlotte d'Amboise and Tony Roberts—there's been speculation that Ashford may have Broadway aspirations for this production. He's been asked directly about that and hasn't admitted to any such hopes, but what he's accomplished here—though it could certainly play on Broadway—is something different and arguably even more surprising and impressive. He's made the case that Carousel should have a place in the world of opera."
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John Olson


Chicago Stage Review - Highly Recommended

"...Carousel boasts a sterling cast led by Steven Pasquale in the role of Billy Bigelow. Fans of Pasquale’s television work (Rescue Me, Do No Harm, Six Feet Under, The Good Wife) will be bowled over by the beauty and power of his singing voice, which has gotten little to no exposure in his TV roles. It is well known on Broadway, however, where Pasquale recently starred in The Bridges of Madison County for which he received a Drama Desk nomination."
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Lori Dana


Time Out Chicago - Highly Recommended

"...The Lyric’s new production, directed and choreographed by Rob Ashford, is anything but small-scale. This Carousel employs a lush 36-piece orchestra and a raft of ensemble singers, rendering Rodgers’s rich score with exquisite care; lead actors Laura Osnes, Steven Pasquale and Jenn Gambatese sing their roles gorgeously. Scenic designer Paolo Ventura, a visual artist making his theatrical debut, depicts both 19th-century New England and the backyard of Heaven in beautifully simplistic, painterly forms."
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Kris Vire


Chicago On the Aisle - Recommended

"...As the show fires up under conductor David Chase, a parade of swirling circus tents glides into view and their canvases lift to briefly peekaboo the wonders inside. These early minutes are indeed memorable, but subsequently the production tends toward theatrical letdown, despite a really wonderful barker in Pasquale's Billy and some of the best music and lyrics that Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein ever wrote. "Carousel" is the story of nice girl Julie, who falls for the barker, who marries her and then proceeds to make a mess of both their lives."
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Nancy Malitz


ChicagoCritic - Highly Recommended

"...I left Carousel realizing that I just witnessed the greatness of Rogers & Hammerstein and the beauty of musical theatre itself. It was gratifying to see groups of high school students, dressed to the nine’s attending Carousel. I’m sure they were impressed with this show. They saw a world-class production of the show that Time Magazine called “The greatest musical of the 20th Century.” This Lyric Opera production takes its place as one of the most perfect productions of a beloved musical seen on a Chicago stage! Take the whole family to experience the high art of Carousel."
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Tom Williams


Around The Town Chicago - Highly Recommended

"...The Lyric Opera of Chicago, in its new tradition, is presenting a major musical theater presentation each season in addition to the operas presented. This new tradition has been a stunning addition to our “Musical Theater Scene”, and perhaps has drawn some opera lovers to the musical theater platform. I hope so, as the productions they have brought to this large venue have been in a word “AWESOME”!"
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Alan Bresloff


Chicago Theatre Review - Highly Recommended

"...This is a rare opportunity to see and hear this seldom-produced musical performed the way Rodgers and Hammerstein envisioned their second hit musical. It shouldn’t be missed. There’s romance, humor and pathos, with spectacle galore, in a unique opportunity to enjoy real Broadway performances, alongside many of Chicago’s best musical theatre actors, in what can only be called a dream of a musical."
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Colin Douglas


Huffington Post - Highly Recommended

"...Lyric Opera of Chicago's production is a Carousel for the ages. Not only is it exquisitely sung and masterfully acted by a cast of Broadway veterans, its hypnotic production design by Paolo Ventura elevates the dreamlike and otherworldly aspects of this heartbreaking love story."
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Robert Bullen


Chicagoland Theater Reviews - Recommended

"...The Lyric has brought in Rob Ashford as the director and choreographer. Ashford has a formidable list of credits in both musicals and straight plays on Broadway and in London, but he hasn’t brought much creative charge to this production. There are a few sparkling moments but overall the staging is inert, with choruses grouped and virtually motionless and a lack of energy pervasive, including less than inspired choreography that rouses itself only occasionally."
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Dan Zeff


  Carousel Photo Gallery

   This show has been Jeff Recommended*

*The designation of "Jeff Recommended" is given to a production when at least ONE ELEMENT of the show was deemed outstanding by the Joseph Jefferson Awards Committee.


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