Love and music soar in The Goodman Theatre’s “Brigadoon”

Brigadoon is a musical-lover’s kind of musical, complete with soaring melodies that stay in your head for days. The Goodman Theatre’s new production of Brigadoon (under the direction of Chicago favorite Rachel Rockwell) features new additions to the book by Brian Hill and is an exciting new take on this classic play, being given its first major staging in 30 years.

If you go

Runs through August 17th, 2014

For tickets and information, call 312.443.3800 or goodmantheatre.org

The story surrounds the strange Scottish town of Brigadoon and its otherworldly citizens who suddenly come face to face with two “modern” Americans. And when one of Brigadoon’s lasses falls for a 1940s-era guy questioning his life’s direction, choices affecting both sides of the mist need to be made.

Jennie Sophia as the lass Fiona is fun and spirited- with pipes that don’t mess around. Another standout in the cast includes Maggie Portman as Meg Brockie (a character that could easily devolve into floozy caricature but is instead imbued with intense longing shored up by devil-may-care sass). But truly, there’s no weak link in the bunch. The graceful strength and skill required of each and every ensemble member is beyond impressive, and lends a balletic air of storytelling to an already beautiful tale. And when Fiona and Tommy (charmingly and impressively voiced by Kevin Earley) ended the song “Almost Like Being in Love,” the applause break lasted for roughly three minutes.

Intended for all audiences (especially a knockout for ages 10 and up), Brigadoon has heart for miles. The earnest demeanor of the Scottish townspeople trapped in time juxtaposed against the sharpness of the American 1940s results in an absolutely delightful evening of theatre. The love story of Fiona and Tommy is surprisingly relevant in 2014; the temptation to escape our realities, the bright flush of romance in comparison to the limping recovery from war, and the desire to live like today is the only one we’ll get.

Theatergoers won’t be able to help but come away from the performance with Brigadoon’s themes of love and permanence etched into their minds, and with a renewed desire to live beautifully in the now.

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