Waitress: A fun evening at the theater any way you slice it

Waitress: A fun evening at the theater any way you slice it
Charity Angel Dawson (left) as Becky, Desi Oakley as Jenna and Lenne Klingaman as Dawn blow on a pinch of flour as they perform a song in the musical "Waitress."

Waitress made its long anticipated Chicago debut at Broadway In Chicago’s Cadillac Palace Theatre (151 W. Randolph) this Tuesday for a limited three-week engagement July 3 – 22, 2018. 

Inspired by Adrienne Shelly’s 2007 film, Waitress, the musical is the slice of life story of Jenna (Desi Oakley), a waitress and expert pie maker who is stuck in an abusive marriage with a controlling husband Earl (Nick Bailey).

She lives out her dreams, fantasies and misgivings through her delicious and creatively named pies, whipping up some pretty impressive and unique creations–from mermaid marshmallow to deep dish blueberry bacon–as she tries to escape her dreary life and find happiness.

Jenna is part of a trio of waitresses that work at Joe’s Pie Diner. The threesome are close friends as well as co-workers sharing their hopes, dreams and dreary lives as they wait tables and wait for something better to come along all while putting up with the constant nagging of their boss, Cal (Ryan G. Dunkin).

Jenna’s fellow waitresses Becky (Charity Angél Dawson) and Dawn (Lenne Klingaman) lives aren’t much better than Jenna’s although they both agree that they are better off. Becky is married to an invalid husband who she works to support and Dawn–a shy nerdy type–would just like to find someone to love her–if only she could figure out how.

Other outstanding cast members include Bryan Fenkhart (Memphis) as Dr. Pomatter; Larry Marshall (Waitress, Smokey Joe’s Café) as Old Joe, owner of the Pie Diner and a hilarious Jeremy Morse (Waitress) as Ogie.

They are joined by the ensemble which includes Skyler Adams, Law Terrell Dunford, Patrick Dunn, James Hogan, David Hughey, Arica Jackson, Kyra Kennedy, Emily Koch, Maiesha McQueen, Gerianne Perez, Grace Stockdale.

Waitress the Musical

Waitress the Musical

While Jenna dreams of a way out of her sad situation, she finds she is pregnant–making thing even more difficult.

If this is all starting to sound more sad and depressing than fun. Wait. There’s lots to come. Along with recipes for happiness for all.

Waitress the Musical

Waitress the Musical. Jenna and Dr. Pomatter.

Waitress starred Tony Award-winning Chicago actress Jessie Mueller in the lead role in New York where it got rave reviews. The National Touring production has done a good job of casting with Desi Oakley stepping nicely into the role.

Unusual, but not surprising, the show was brought to life by a groundbreaking all-female creative team, that understands the female psyche.

With the book by acclaimed screenwriter Jessie Nelson (I Am Sam) and direction by Tony Award® winner Diane Paulus (Hair, Pippin, Finding Neverland) and original music and lyrics by 6-time Grammy® nominee Sara Bareilles (“Brave,” “Love Song”) you’re sure to leave the theater, if not singing–at least humming–not to mention–a smile on your face. You might also want to bring along some extra change for one of those pocket pies they sell in the lobby at all performances–as you’re sure to be craving one.

Review: “Waitress” (3 stars)

When: Through July 22

Where: Cadillac Palace Theatre, 151 W. Randolph St.

Running time: 2 hours, 30 minutes

Tickets: $27-$105 at 800-775-2000 and www.broadwayinchicago.com


Tuesdays at 7:30PM

Wednesdays at 2:00PM & 7:30PM

Thursdays at 7:30PM (Added 2:00PM matinee on July 5)

Fridays at 7:30PM

Saturdays at 2:00PM and 8:00PM

Sundays at 2:00PM (Added 7:30PM evening performance on July 8)

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