Sunday, April 15, 2012

A Most Amazing Gift

Talk about anticipation. The Civic Center of Greater Des Moines announced the 2012-2013 season a couple weeks ago and it will put a major dent in my pocketbook. Not only are we getting the current Tony winner for Best Musical, The Book of Mormon, but we are also getting the current Tony winner for Best Play, War Horse.

I have been listening to Mormon since the show exploded last year and it is back in my rotation, and better than ever, knowing that I will get to see the show live. War Horse, known for the magical life size puppets from the Handspring Puppet Company, will no doubt be better than the movie which came out late last year.

One of the returning shows is Les Miserables, which somehow I have not seen. The last time it was in town I was fourteen and it really was not on my radar. Since then I have become attached to it because I watched the 25th anniversary concert and a friend of mine gave me the music. I'll admit that I don't understand all of the  pieces of the plot and am hopeful that seeing the full show will fill in the gaps.

Million Dollar Quartet will also make a stop. And while I am not anticipating it quite as much as the others, the music of Elvis, Johnny Cash, and Jerry Lee Lewis will no doubt be a draw. The Civic Center's announcement event included a performance from the Chicago company and they brought the house down with familiar numbers such as "Hound Dog" and "Great Balls of Fire."

The other returning show in the Broadway Series is also the one that I will skip. That show is Jekyll & Hyde. Constantine Maroulis was a hit when he stopped here last year with Rock of Ages and that may help the show's chances. For me, Maroulis is not a draw, the story is not a draw, and I do not think I will regret my decision to put the funds towards one of the add-on options.

The add-on shows include Beauty and the Beast, Rock of Ages, and Jersey Boys. All wonderful options, but I am most excited to see Jersey Boys again. So much so that when they announced it my heart fluttered with delight. Jersey Boys has a solid story and music that gets toes tapping; if you have not seen it, you will not be disappointed.

All in all, no complaints. Next season will be amazing and will only further the case that Des Moines is a major player in the theater world. Just one of the many perks to living in Des Moines; that is, if the corn fields, ceaseless wind, and bitter cold just aren't doing it for you.

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