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  Play Details

Crowns

Goodman Theatre
170 N. Dearborn Street Chicago

When Chicago-born Yolanda is sent down South after the death of her brother, she finds strength in the tales of the wise women who surround her—and the powerful rituals connected to their dazzling hats. This jubilant musical traces the roots of Gospel through contemporary hip hop, fusing rich storytelling with abundant “hattitude” into a stirring coming-of-age tale. Crowns is a not-to-be-missed celebration of song, dance, cultural history—and glamorous headwear.

Thru - Aug 12, 2012



Price: $29-$88

Show Type: Musical

Box Office: 312-443-3800

www.goodmantheatre.org


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  Crowns Reviews

Chicago Tribune - Highly Recommended

"...Regina Taylor's "Crowns" — a huge hit on the regional-theater circuit a decade or so ago but never a Broadway musical — has been reconceived as a Chicago story with roots in Englewood. As reimagined by Taylor in a big summer production at the Goodman Theatre, the show now is not just a gospel-fused celebration of African-American women and their eye-popping Sunday headgear but a meditation on the potential redemptive powers of the proud matriarchs of the South when it comes to saving one of Chicago's troubled daughters."
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Chris Jones


NewCity Chicago - Recommended

"... Too often do producing theaters misconceive work about a particular community for work that truly speaks to a community. “Crowns,” though, not only speaks to Chicago, but sings songs of praise and promise. In the play’s end, Yolanda comes home to Chicago a reformed, fulfilled woman. I was quite moved to see that she does not give up on her home, but willingly returns. Despite its discrepancies of staging and plot, few works of theater have intent as genuinely virtuous as “Crowns.”"
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Johnny Oleksinski


Stage and Cinema - Recommended

"...In this production, the leading ladies are all worth mentioning for being able to belt it out like they can. As Mama Shaw, Felicia Fields and her deep, rich voice simply steal the show as Yolanda’s grandmother, a woman with a heart of gold and a no-nonsense attitude. Pauletta Washington, E. Faye Butler, and Jasondra Johnson are also excellent in their respective roles—Johnson has to battle through some more turbulent moments in the script, like the ignominious pun “hattitude” which got, at best, a pity chuckle both of the times it was uttered. She handles this with as much grace as she can."
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Paul Kubicki


ChicagoCritic - Highly Recommended

"... Felicia P. Fields and E. Faye Butler anchor a cast of strong voices that, together with slick dancers, produce a most engaging and well crafted Gospel musical. No wonder that Crowns is one of the most produced musicals in America. It is an glimpse into the one of the finest traditions in the vast assortment of the American Experience. Crowns is a heartfelt show that needs to be seen to fully appreciate."
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Tom Williams


Chicago Stage Standard - Recommended

"...With an expanded orchestra and arrangements, “Crowns” does full justice to its title. You feel the labor(s) of love that goes into these heavenly hats. The final Ziegfeld-like runway procession of the ladies in full fashion (the worthy work of Karen Perry) strutting up a storm to “Gonna Shout All Over God’s Heaven” is a complex but compelling mix of vanity and piety. It sends mixed messages in all directions."

Lawrence Bommer


Around The Town Chicago - Highly Recommended

"... No matter your musical likes or dislikes, what “Crowns” brings to life is a satisfying theatrical experiences filled with some of the best Gospel you will ever hear and I guarantee you will be clapping your hands and stomping your feet several times during the course of the performance. Through the stories that Yolanda is told by these “Hat Queens”, she learns about history and come s to the realization that she herself can pass on this for the future."
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Alan Bresloff


Huffington Post - Highly Recommended

"... To introduce us to this world of hat fetishists, we have Yolanda (Marketta P. Wilder, a fierce young actress making a bold Chicago theatre debut). Yolanda is a defensive teenager grappling with the sudden loss of her older brother, a victim of a petty street shooting. In a defensive move, Yolanda's mother ships her from the rough streets of Chicago's Englewood neighborhood to the sunny hills of South Carolina to be with her grandmother, Mother Shaw (the earthy Felicia Fields), and her extended family. There, rap and hip-hop is traded in for gospel and chant circles, much to Yolanda's disorientation."
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Bob Bullen


   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 opening night judges of The Joseph Jefferson Awards Committee. The entire production is then eligible for nomination for awards at the end of the season.


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