Theo Ubique’s “Blood Brothers” Review – Prince and Pauper Musical

Kyrie Anderson as Mrs. Johnstone

 

With a rhyming book and libretto, “Blood Brothers” tells a UK-variant of the Prince and the Pauper tale, i.e. twins separated at birth with one living a posh life and another left to struggle in poverty.  With a theme of the consequences of class, this musical by Willy Russell (books, lyrics, music) ran for 24 years in London’s West End.

 

Charlie Mann as Mickey

 

Theo Ubique brings a fresh-faced cast to the telling of the tale.  With seemingly perfect dialect and accent—whether singing or speaking (Dialects and Vocal Coach- Adam Goldstein), the eleven-person cast performs with great energy.  The most energetic of all, and the person you may often find your head turning to see, is pianist Jeremy Ramey, who along with drummer Kevin Brown, bass player Zachary Moore, and guitarist Justin LaForte keeps the action moving with the almost non-stop score of 22 songs. 

 

Cody Jolly as Edward, Charlie Mann as Mickey

 

The nature of Theo Ubique’s itsy cabaret performance space in No Exit Café is such that most of the audience can reach out and touch the performers for much of the production. 

 

Jordan Phelps as The Narrator

 

If you love the light-hearted musicals genre and seeing fledgling actors make one of their earliest reaches for the brass ring, “Blood Brothers” is a good bet.  Theo Ubique, which began producing in 1997, has produced more than 50 shows and received more than 40 Jeff Awards, along with more than 100 Jeff nominations.

 

L-R: Charlie Mann as Mickey, Cody Jolly as Edward

 

Now through November 15.

 

No Exit Café

6970 North Glenwood

Chicago, IL

 

For tickets or information visit the Theo Ubique website.

 

Photos by Adam Veness

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