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Last night we attended Charlie and the Chocolate Factory: A New Musical (book by David Grieg, music by Marc Shaiman, lyrics by Scott Wittman and Marc Shaiman) with two of our kids, and to say it was a hit was an understatement. We left singing the tunes and talking about the show all the way home!
Zions Bank Broadway at the Eccles is concluding the North American tour of Roald Dahl’s CHARLIE AND THE CHOCOLATE FACTORY in Salt Lake City’s Eccles Theater from June 14 – 19, 2022.
This Roald Dahl story that we all grew up loving has come to life on the Eccles stage in Salt Lake City this week as the Broadway touring cast wowed Utah. Keeping true to the story, the musical begins with the story of a boy who is a dreamer just like his Grandpa both living in less than ideal circumstances. When 5 children receive their golden tickets they are brought into the factory, a place that no one had seen before. It was magical from the sets, to the costumes, to the delightful singing and dancing that kept us mesmerized throughout the show.
The costumes and sets brought so much life to the stage as you transitioned from the Bucket’s poverty-stricken home to the bright and whimsical Willy Wonka Factory. They took detail to a new level in all the little things throughout the show. From the patchwork quilt to the transition as you meet Wonka in front of his factory, everything had a place and it made for layers of fun throughout the show.
The highlight for my kids was when the Oompa Loompas joined the stage. They got a laugh from everyone as the creative choreography made them such a fun addition to the show. I laughed out loud many times.
“Who can take a sunrise, sprinkle it in dew, cover it in chocolate and a miracle or two? The candy man can!” Cody Garcia playing Willy Wonka stole the show from the minute he stepped on stage. He truly brought you into a world of imagination as his character balanced the imaginative world of curiosity with his comedic nature that bantered back and forth with Charlie Bucket. His comedic timing hit the mark every time. Charlie was a delight as he brought you to the edge of your seat hoping he would get his golden ticket. You were truly pulling for him throughout the show as he tugged at your heartstrings with his darling personality and determined attitude.
The songs sung by each of the golden ticket holders as they were introduced blew me away. These were fun, big numbers with voices and costumes to match. I enjoyed watching all of their entrances which set up their personalities for the Wonka tour perfectly.
Holding a bigger part than I had expected was Charlie Bucket’s mother played by Claire Leyden. She brought such a beautiful moment to the show as she sang about what life would be like if Charlie’s father was there. She was a ray of optimism throughout the hard times their family was facing and brought grace to the stage with each appearance. Her voice was flawless and stunning as she sang.
This show is not to be missed! Charlie and the Chocolate Factory will bring back the nostalgia of a childhood favorite in a big way that will leave you wanting to return.
*My only disappointment was in our Salt Lake City audience as many of them left before the bows. Remember good etiquette as you attend any performance, and stay until the bows are complete. No matter how anxious you are to get to your car, never leave a show until the actors have left the stage. This is our way of thanking the actors for their performance.
Roald Dahl’s CHARLIE AND THE CHOCOLATE FACTORY in Salt Lake City’s Eccles Theater is playing from June 14 – 19, 2022.
Tickets are available by clicking here or by calling 801-355-ARTS (2787) and in-person at the Eccles Theater box office, M-F 10 am-6 pm; Sat. 10 am-2 pm and Mid-Valley Performing Arts Center, M-F 10 am-2 pm.
I received tickets to this performance, but all opinions are my own.