review: theatre under the stars presents 42nd street

There is nothing that compares to a Theatre Under the Stars (TUTS) production. Sitting quite literally under the stars, sipping a glass of wine; the spotlight reflecting off the wings of moths and giving the illusion of tiny glittering fireflies; all while some of the city’s brightest talent sing and dance their hearts out. It’s one of the summer’s great traditions, and this year’s production of 42nd Street maximizes the already wonderful ambiance that exists when TUTS takes over Stanley Park’s Malkin Bowl.

42nd street
Image by Lindsay Elliott Photography. Jolene Bernardino, Paige Fraser, Joscelyne Tamburri, Julia Ullrich

A rip-roaring, larger than life tale of showbiz in the 1930s, 42nd Street is a hoot and a half (seriously, our faces hurt by curtains). It tells the story of a young woman with dreams of being a Broadway star, a leading lady on the verge of passing her prime, and the theatre director determined to recapture his past glory with another big hit.

With a ton of flawlessly choreographed tap numbers, classic Broadway tunes like We’re in the Money and Lullaby of Broadway, and some truly stellar acting performances, the TUTS spin on this classic musical is not to be missed.

A couple of tips to keep in mind for the show:

We realized after it was over that soft cushions are available to borrow. The sturdy chairs provided are great, but they would have been significantly more comfortable with a pillow, so make sure you grab one as you enter the audience seating area.

Bring bug spray! We so regret not doing this. The mosquitos are out in full force this time of year, and you don’t want the little pests detracting from your enjoyment of the show.

Though the subject matter is pretty tame and family friendly, the lateness (curtain rises at 8 pm) and length (2.5 hours including intermission) of the show mean that it isn’t likely ideal for younger kids. Tween and older musical theatre aficionados, however, are bound to have a great time.

You can pre-order your drink for intermission and they’ll have it ready and waiting for you. This cuts back on time spent in line and maximizes time spent enjoying the atmosphere.

There’s a great snack bar stocked with everything you’ll need to munch on while enjoying the show. It’s cash only, so make sure you bring some (an ATM is available on site, but again, lines…). The beer and wine bar accepts credit and debit cards.

Don’t miss the fun selfie station! Backdrops in the themes of both 42nd Street and Cinderella, TUTS’ other production running this summer, are available to ensure you get the perfect ‘gram to commemorate your night out at the theatre.

What a way to take in some culture!

42nd Street is playing at Malkin Bowl until August 17th. Click here for showtime and ticket information.

Theatre Under the Stars
Malkin Bowl, Stanley Park

By Dayna Wilson

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