Review: National Tour of Ghost the Musical is Sweet and Sappy

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Over the weekend, I went to see the Broadway national tour of Ghost the Musical. It stopped in Hartford, CT, June 12 through June 15, at The Bushnell as part of the theater's annual Broadway series.

A little background about the show: Ghost the Musical is based on the 1990 film "Ghost" starring Patrick Swayze, Demi Moore, Whoopi Goldberg, and Tony Goldwyn. The live, musical version first opened in the UK in 2011, before transferring to Broadway in April 2012. Shortly thereafter, the show launched its national U.S. tour, which is currently scheduled through August 2014.

Both the show and the film center on Sam and Molly, a young couple who are dealt an unexpected blow when Sam dies, leaving him trapped between two worlds. When Sam realizes Molly is in danger, he refuses to move on and instead turns to a psychic in order to communicate with Molly and ask her to avenge his death.

So how did the story translate onstage? Check out my review below to find out.

Please note: Major spoilers ahead!


Theater news

In Broadway news this week, there's good news for shows like Holler If Ya Hear Me, Hedwig and the Angry Inch, and Lady Day at Emerson's Bar & Grill. Plus, the countdown till the Tony nominees is on!

Holler If Ya Hear Me Gets a Star

Last July, it was announced a musical based on the music of Tupac Shakur would be heading to Broadway. Alas, there was no date, just a vague time frame and the knowledge that Tupac's music was the catalyst behind the production. Recently, the show not only got a firm debut date (June 19, 2014, with previews beginning May 26, 2014), but the cast was announced, too. Renowned slam poet, singer, and actor Saul Williams will take the title role in Holler If Ya Hear Me, alongside other Broadway veterans, such as Christopher Jackson (After Midnight), Saycon Sengbloh (Fela!), and Ben Thompson (Matilda). Tonya Pinkins, John Earl Jelks, Joshua Boone, and Dyllon Burnside round out the cast.


Aladdin Starts Broadway Previews Tonight

Aladdin on Broadway

It's here, it's here, it's finally here! It's possible you weren't as excited about Aladdin debuting on Broadway at the team, but we're pretty thrilled the show will make its debut tonight. It seems like just yesterday we were announcing the new show and musing over the leaked details.

Tonight, Aladdin — the next Disney musical to grace the Great White Way — begins its previews at New Amsterdam Theatre. Adam Jacobs will star in the lead role of Aladdin, while Jonathan Freeman plays Jafar; James Monroe is Genie; and Courtney Reed will play Jasmine. Buzzfeed provided a sneak peek of what these characters will look like on stage, and it looks just as great as we imagined.

But we'll stop gushing now. Instead, we'll leave it at this: break a leg, Aladdin!

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4 Other Disney Films That Should Head to the Broadway Stage

Theater shows

With Aladdin slated to make its Broadway debut in little more than a month, as well as the confirmation that "Frozen" will be the next film to be adapted for the theater stage, I can't help but think of what other films from the beloved company would do well on stage. To be clear, to me there is a difference between a story simply being adapted for the theater and the Walt Disney production company taking one of its films and making it a Broadway hit. In the latter scenario, there is something magical that happens when the finished product is ready for the stage.

Here are four other films I'd like to see turned into productions that could rival The Lion King and Mary Poppins.

Alice in Wonderland

What the 1951 film lacks in songs, it more than makes up for in visual effects. The mad tea party, the shrinking and growing of Alice, the magical forest, and the Queen's court would all make incredible sets on stage. Then there are the characters, such as the White Rabbit, Cheshire cat, Caterpillar, Tweedle Dee and Tweedle Dum, the Mad Hatter and March Hare, and the Queen of Hearts, who would be fun to see live. The costumes would be bright, over-the-top, and probably a bit like a Dr. Seuss book.


A 'Back to the Future' Musical is Heading to London's West End

Theater news

After the announcement that Broadway is willing to take a chance on a show like "Rocky the Musical," it's not too surprising to learn that "Back to the Future" is the latest famous film to get an on-stage adaptation.

The musical will celebrate the 30th anniversary of "Back to the Future" starring Michael J. Fox. It is slated to open in London's West End come 2015, with a possibility for it to also make an appearance on Broadway.

Robert Zemeckis will write the plays book, along with Bob Gale and Jamie Lloyd, while music and lyrics will be composed by Alan Silvestri and Glen Ballard. Lloyd, who will also direct the show, said, "The production will include illusions, skateboarding and many other surprises that will capture the spirit of the film but freshly interpret it for a new audience."

Relive the trailer behind the cut!

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