Step Into Willy Wonka’s Colorful World of Pure Imagination at DeVos Place
March 10-15, 2020
If you’re looking for a whimsical, laughter-filled night with your favorite tween or teen, you must see Broadway GR’s Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. I took my 5th grader and she was enthralled.
It was her first Broadway show and she was digging every musical number and every zany character.
I was pretty enthralled, too. (Despite the human-sized squirrels. I am afraid of squirrels but these guys may have been a tiny bit enchanting.)
The set is just as colorful as you’d expect, and the characters are larger than life. The new songs are just as good as the old ones, and you’ll still catch favorite tunes from the movies.
Broadway’s Charlie and the Chocolate Factory is Just as Good as the Wonka Movies
I can’t believe I said that. I’m a big fan of Willy Wonka and Charlie Bucket. I love the book, the classic Gene Wilder movie, and even the bizarre Johnny Depp remake. In fact, if my new puppy had been a girl, she would have been named Violet Beauregard. (Instead, I have an adorable male puppy named Fitzwilliam Darcy.)
But Broadway’s Charlie and the Chocolate Factory artfully blends original favorites with newer takes on song and story in a way that allows it to stand on its own in the Roald Dahl linep.
Ryan Umbarila and Cody Garcia, who play Charlie Bucket and Willy Wonka, respectively, were completely charming (I think I like this Charlie Bucket best of all). The set was simple but spectacular and the songs were great. Even the new ones.
I was concerned that I wouldn’t enjoy the new songs, but they’re just as catchy as the old songs they sang. As we walked out my daughter even asked if there was an album for this show, because she wanted to hear Veruca Salt’s song again.
But what my tween really loved was that this production modernizes the characters. She actually said (unprovoked) that her favorite thing about Charlie and the Chocolate Factory is that it’s more modern. For example, Violet Beauregard is a bubble-gum chewing pop star from L.A. Mike TeeVee is still obsessed with screens, but with tablets and smartphones instead of television sets streaming Westerns.
Yes, There are Ooompa Loompas, Too
I was wondering if Oompa Loompas would make an appearance. Originally written by Dahl as people of smaller stature, an Oompa Loompa cast could be insensitive to people with dwarfism.
But Broadway’s Oompa Loompas are respectful, hilarious and everlastingly entertaining.
I could tell the actors on the Oompa Loompa squad had a blast. (No orange faces required.)
Golden Ticket Alert!! Students and Teachers Get Discounted Tickets to Charlie and the Chocolate Factory in GR
Broadway Grand Rapids is selling $30 Student/Educator Rush tickets for Roald Dahl’s Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. (A valid school ID is required, and the limit is two tickets per student/educator. Ticket sales are subject to availability.)
Rush tickets may be bought in person 2 hours prior to the show at DeVos Performance Hall Box Office (303 Monroe Ave NW in Grand Rapids).
Not a teacher or student?
Tickets are on sale Through Ticketmaster, by Phone and at DeVos Place
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory is here till March 15, 2020:
- Wednesday, March 11, 2020 – 7:30pm
- Thursday, March 12, 2020 – 7:30pm
- Friday, March 13, 2020 – 8:00pm
- Saturday, March 14, 2020 – 2:00pm
- Saturday, March 14, 2020 – 8:00pm
- Sunday, March 15, 2020 – 1:00pm
- Sunday, March 15, 2020 – 6:30pm
Purchase tickets online, by calling the box office at (616) 235-6285, or stopping by the DeVos Place Grand Gallery Box Office or Broadway Grand Rapids Box Office. DeVos Performance Hall is located in downtown Grand Rapids, just south of Michigan St NW, on Monroe Ave NW.
After you go, I’d love to hear what you think!