Disney’s Newsies has been a popular show since it was first made into a musical adapted from the film of the same name in 2011. And, based on North Carolina Theatre’s production, directed by Steve Bebout, it’s easy to see why.
The musical follows a group of kids who sling newspapers for a living in 1899 New York. Their “ringleader” is the fast-talking, mischievous Jack Kelly (Jason Gotay). Kelly has such sway over his friends that, when papers start to charge the “newsies” ten cents more per paper, he gets them to form a union and go on strike, a decision that plays out with surprising (but meant to be) results.
Aside from the riveting story, what stands out the most in Newsies is the choreography. Parker Esse has the newsies hopping, spinning, and jumping all over the place in astounding ways. The choreography is so much fun to watch that one easily gets lost in it. Of course, the acting is pretty stellar here too.
Gotay is super charming as Jack Kelly, and Shannon O’Boyle stands out with her sassy version of Katherine Plummer, a young reporter with a secret whom the boys meet on their quest. Also nice here is Steve Raymond’s endearing portrayal of Crutchie, Jack’s friend who walks with a limp.
As the characters’ story comes to a crazy conclusion, albeit a happy one, the play feels over all too soon. Everything from the dancing to the lighting to the fun music is so wonderful that it will be hard for viewers to see it end. Fortunately, there are shows through the 29th, so there’s still plenty of time to see this fun frolic of a show.
The North Carolina Theatre presents Disney’s NEWSIES at 7:30 p.m. July 27 and 2 and 7:30 p.m. July 28 and 29 in Raleigh Memorial Auditorium in the Duke Energy Center for the Performing Arts, 2 E. South St., Raleigh, North Carolina 27601.
TICKETS: $25.15-$108.15, except $25 college-student tickets.
BOX OFFICE: NCT Box Office: 919-831-6941, ext. 6944, or http://www.nctheatre.com/tickets/season-tickets.
Ticketmaster: 800-745-3000 or https://www.ticketmaster.com/venueartist/369155/2485834.
2017-18 SEASON: https://nctheatre.com/show-season/201718-season.
NCT NEWS RELEASE: https://nctheatre.com/blog/nc-theatre-announces-cast-disneys-newsies-0.
PRESENTER: http://www.nctheatre.com/, https://www.facebook.com/nctheatre, https://twitter.com/nctheatre, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/North_Carolina_Theatre, and http://www.youtube.com/user/nctheatre.
NCT BLOG (Stage Notes): http://www.nctheatre.com/stage-notes.
NOTE: Arts Access, Inc. of Raleigh will audio-describe the show’s 2 p.m. Saturday, July 28th, performance.
Newsies (1992 movie musical): http://movies.disney.com/newsies (official website), http://www.tcm.com/tcmdb/title/21492/Newsies/ (Turner Classic Movies page), http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0104990/ (Internet Movie Database), and http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Newsies (Wikipedia).
Newsies (2011 Paper Mill Playhouse and 2012 Broadway musical): http://www.newsiesthemusical.com/ (official website), http://www.mtishows.com/show_detail.asp?showid=000427 (Music Theatre International), https://www.ibdb.com/broadway-show/newsies-the-musical-491209 (Internet Broadway Database), https://www.facebook.com/Newsies (Facebook page), https://twitter.com/Newsies (Twitter page), and http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Newsies_%28musical%29 (Wikipedia).
Alan Menken (music): http://www.alanmenken.com/ (official website), https://www.ibdb.com/broadway-cast-staff/alan-menken-12135 (Internet Broadway Database), https://www.facebook.com/AlanMenkenStudio (Facebook page), https://twitter.com/aimenken (Twitter page), and http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alan_Menken (Wikipedia).
Jack Feldman (lyrics): https://www.ibdb.com/broadway-cast-staff/jack-feldman-79622 (Internet Broadway Database) and http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jack_Feldman_%28songwriter%29 (Wikipedia).
Harvey Fierstein (book): https://www.ibdb.com/broadway-cast-staff/harvey-fierstein-6157 (Internet Broadway Database), https://www.facebook.com/harvey.fierstein (Facebook page), https://twitter.com/harveyfierstein (Twitter page), and http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Harvey_Fierstein (Wikipedia).
Susie Potter is a Raleigh, NC-based freelance writer and editor. She is a 2009 graduate of Raleigh’s Meredith College, where she majored in English. She holds graduate degrees in teaching and American literature from North Carolina State University in Raleigh. In addition to her work for Triangle Arts and Entertainment, she is an award-winning author of short fiction. Her works have appeared in The Colton Review, Raleigh Quarterly, Broken Plate Magazine, Big Muddy: A Journal of the Mississippi River Valley, the Chaffey Review, and Existere. To read all of Susie Potter’s Triangle Arts and Entertainment articles and reviews, click http://triangleartsandentertainment.org/author/susie-q/. To read more of her writings, click http://www.triangleartsreview.com/, http://www.susiepotter.com, and http://www.myspace.com/susiepotter.