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 Post subject: TREVOR the musical
PostPosted: Sun Sep 17, 2017 4:04 pm 
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Location: Boston, MA
A musical based on the 1994 Academy Award-winning short film Trevor has made its world premiere at Writers Theatre outside Chicago. Having opened August 8 and originally scheduled to close September 17, it has been extended a second time to October 8.

Upon catching a Saturday evening performance, I found the musical to be a good adaptation and expansion of the video. A large part of the credit goes to the impressive talents of Eli Tokash playing Trevor. (He shares the role with Graydon Peter Yosowitz.) Eli was in Finding Neverland on Broadway where I happened to see him as Peter. As was the case in FN, Eli is excellent in conveying his character's emotions and thoughts. For a work such as TREVOR the musical, that is absolutely critical and parallels BETM to an extent.

One thing I was not quite so thrilled with was the tendency of shows with a message to turn it into pushing THE MESSAGE. I am not talking about the supplementary information in the program with links to the Trevor Project, the hotline they sponsor and support available. These are highly commendable and a positive aspect of this particular work of art. Rather, a few of the artistic choices seem to be the director and/or producers making sure THE MESSAGE gets through loud and clear. I just don't think it's needful for THE MESSAGE to be drawn out so boldly. Admittedly, a large part of the target audience is the adolescent crowd who may need things spelled out more clearly than seasoned theatre-goers. Still, one very critical point of the show I suspect may well be regarded a little corny even by those new to theatre. Fortunately, this can mostly be forgiven, but if there is a follow-on production of TREVOR elsewhere, I would hope an improvement can be made here.

A transfer to Broadway seems to be a consideration. My best guess is that it could be successful Off Broadway, but an attempt at something bigger would face a serious challenge. Given the tender age of the lead in particular and of the vast majority of the cast, it's hard to escape a stigma of being a show for teens even though adults can appreciate it as well.

Bottom line, those who will be in the Chicago area in the next few weeks would find it worth a few hours to catch TREVOR while it is there.


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