FINDING NEVERLAND

It’s telling that the Best Picture Oscar-nominated Finding Neverland scored not a single Tony nomination when set to music on Broadway in 2015. Despite a number of memorable moments (and an Act One finale that may well inspire longer, louder, more deserved cheers than any in recent memory), Finding Neverland The Musical substitutes broad comedy, generic songs, and cartoonish supporting characters for the subtlety and depth that made Finding Neverland The Movie one of 2005’s most acclaimed films.
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A GENTLEMAN’S GUIDE TO LOVE AND MURDER

Homicide has rarely been as hilarious as it is in A Gentleman’s Guide To Love And Murder, the murderously mirthful quadruple-Tony-winning Best Musical of 2014, now paying a crowd-delighting weeklong visit to the Segerstrom Center For The Arts.
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FUN HOME

Coming of age. Coming out. Coming to grips. Three extraordinary actresses breathe life into a young lesbian’s journey from childhood to mid-life in Alison Bechdel’s graphic memoir-turned-Tony-winning musical Fun Home, now making a thrilling Los Angeles debut at the Ahmanson.
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946: THE AMAZING STORY OF ADOLPHUS TIPS

World War II England comes breathtakingly to life as Cornwall’s Kneehigh Theatre returns to the Wallis Annenberg Center For The Performing Arts with the magical, musical, mesmerizing (and fact-based) 946: The Amazing Story Of Adolphus Tips.
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TORUK – The First Flight

 

Spectacle there is in abundance and performers are as spectacularly multitalented as you’d expect from Cirque Du Soleil, but the stadium-scale TORUK – The First Flight, now making a four-day stop at The Forum, is likely to prove a letdown to both Cirque fans and those expecting see James Cameron’s Avatar live on stage.
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RENT

Jonathan Larson’s Rent has arrived at Costa Mesa’s Segerstrom Center For The Arts in an energetically performed 20th-Anniversary non-Equity tour that recreates Michael Greif’s original 1996 vision, one that revolutionized Broadway with its now iconic tale of impoverished young artists and musicians just barely holding it together in New York’s Lower East Side during the darkest days of the AIDS epidemic.
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ELF THE MUSICAL

Get ready to fall in love with Elf, both 6’2” Buddy and the Broadway adaptation of the Will Ferrell holiday gem. Elf The Musical is spending a week at the Segerstrom Center For The Arts and some despite stiff competition from White Christmas and The Grinch, it now takes first place as this reviewer’s heart as best holiday musical ever.
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MAMMA MIA!

Mamma Mia!, the jukebox musical that started it all, has come back to Costa Mesa in its Final Farewell Tour, its return to the Segerstrom Center For The Arts offering the Broadway mega-smash’s mega-multitude of fans not only two dozen of ABBA’s Greatest Hits but one of Thanksgiving week’s Greatest Reasons to give thanks.
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