Tony Award winner Diane Paulus brings Broadway’s Finding Neverland to South Florida. Strong candidate for best show of the year.
– review of the show at the Broward Center for Performing Arts (Ft. Lauderdale).
Extraordinary, memorable, fantastic are just a few adjectives to describe Finding Neverland. This charming love story from the 1900’s is based on the life of Peter Pan’s author J.M. Barrie and how he came up with the world renown play.
The narrative centers around a relationship Barrie builds with the newly widowed Silvia and her four young boys. Combining their playfulness with memories of his own childhood and dreams of a place called Neverland, Barrie is inspired to write a play about children who don’t want to grow up. During his newfound relationships, he seemingly takes the eldest son, Peter, under his wings after learning he’s still grieving the death of his father.
The over the top antics of this large ensemble kept you giggling and smiling all night. I really can’t say enough about how wonderful the quirky choreography was. From the very beginning to the end there was just one spectacle after the other be it when combined with an array of talented singers, eye-catching costumes depicting the era, unique props, special lighting and sound effects that were second to none.
Playing the lead role of J.M. Barrie, Will Ray provided so many “wow” moments for the audience, which began during the first set with his flawless number of My Imagination. But, singing aside he continued to amaze us with his humor and dancing skills too.
However, actress Christine Dwyer playing Sylvia, was truly my favorite cast member. Her unbelievable angelic vocals brought tears to my eyes, especially when she sang Sylvia’s Lullaby. Her performance was simply amazing and worth the price of admission alone.
Yet, while memorable on their own, Christine and Will’s combined efforts for What You Mean to Me was a showstopper. The blending of their voices was just uncanny.
Kudos to the casting director, each person in the ensemble including all the children in the play were extremely talented, especially Ben Krieger who plays Peter. What an unbelievable young actor.
This enchanted and extremely uplifting play is so great for the entire family that you’ll want to see it again the second you leave. Don’t miss Finding Neverland while it continues its run through June 25th at the Broward Center for Performing Arts.