Beware as you enter Chicago’s Broadway Playhouse in Water Tower Place–pink is in the air. Be prepared for the buzz as the pink-clad pint-sized audience anticipates the start of the The Emerald City Theatre production of Pinkalicious the Musical, taken from the pages of the New York Times best-seller, Pinkalicious. The majority of the pink-attired guests range in age from 3 to 10 or are the parents (mostly moms) or grandparents (mostly nanas) of the mostly female (some with brothers, in tow) Pinkalicious’ fans
As is often the question, is it better to first see the play/movie or read the book? It was obvious that this young crowd read the book first. For those of you not so well read, Pinkalicious the Musical is based on the HarperCollins book, Pinkalicious, written by Victoria Kann and Elizabeth Kann that tells the story of a little girl with a passion for pink who eats too many pink cupcakes and turns pink. The girl, of course, is thrilled to be pink–her favorite color–but her parents become alarmed after trying to wash the pink off to no avail. They take her to Dr. Wink, where she is diagnosed with Pinktitus. The cure: no more pink foods, instead she must eat all green foods including Brussel sprouts and asparagus shakes.
Pinkalicious the Musical, recreates the book making it larger-than-life, under the inspired direction, choreography and magical set of Ernie Nolan. Pinkalicious (Lara Mainier) plays her role large–taking over the stage with authority and a big voice. In a twist from the book, Dr. Wink is a female doctor instead of a male doctor, the talented Ashley Braxton a student at the Chicago College of Performing Arts at Roosevelt University is well-cast for the role. Pinkalicious’ brother, Peter Pinkerton (Mark Kosten) has an outstanding voice and holds his own against his larger-than-life “little” sister. The rest of the cast, all polished singers and dancers, include: Mrs. Pinkerton, the mom (Rachel Klippel); Mr. Pinkerton, the dad (Patrick Byrnes); and Alex Ring, who played multiple roles including Pinkalicious’ best friend.
The show is colorful and lively–running a kid-friendly 60 minutes. A theme repeated throughout the show (and the book) is “You Get What You Get and You Don’t Get Upset.” The Emerald City Theatre turns the theatrical outing into an event offering a pre-show activity in the lobby and an autograph and photo-op with the cast following the performance. In addition, the program contains games for kids and discussion starters for parents who want to add a moral to the story–reminding their children to eat healthy. For those looking for even more, Pinkalicious (the book), has given birth to a series of books, stickers and, no surprise, a website.
Tickets and Show Information.
Tickets are $16 through $22. They are available by phone at 800 977-1710; or at broadwayinchicago.com. The show runs Thursdays through Sundays at 10 a.m. through January 7, 2012. The Emerald City Theatre at Broadway Playhouse at Water Tower Place, 175 E. Chestnut.
Validated parking is available at the Water Tower Place garage at 163 E. Chestnut. Plan on leaving enough time to wait in line at the garage before entering, as things can get a little busy before show time.
Nearby Kid-friendly venues.
Just upstairs or up the escalator in Water Tower Place, the American Girl store offers shopping, lunch, a doll hair salon and more. Also upstairs, the Mity Nice Grill or the Foodlife food court offer relatively inexpensive and kid-friendly food choices.