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Signifying Nothing: The First National Tour of “Something Rotten”

Meet the Hanslick Girls: Gwen, Eleanor and Dania. Created by writer Zach Barr, they are a trio of friends who are always out experiencing the best of entertainment. Be it plays, films, concerts, exhibits, or restaurants, they’ve learned that the arts are best when experienced together. They may not have the same opinions, but their conversations tend to make for an entertaining read. Recently, the Girls saw “Something Rotten!,” Broadway’s musical comedy about Shakespeare, kind of. Let’s hear what they had to say on their way back from the theater…

 

Right off the bat, Dania could tell that Gwen was going to hate this show.

Which was disappointing. By the time applause for the opening number, the comedic and quick-moving “Welcome To The Renaissance,” had faded away, Dania could sense most of Gwen’s criticisms. The show wasn’t taking itself seriously. The history was entirely inaccurate. The comedy wasn’t funny enough – Dania had been overwhelmingly enjoying the humor, but assumed that Gwen would probably dislike it. After all, this was a musical that took it upon itself to rhyme “genius,” describing Shakespeare, with “penis,” describing the put-upon protagonist Nick Bottom who hated the Bard. In fact, his rant regarding why Will gets to be “The Bard” rather than just “a bard” had mirrored a conversation Dania and Gwen had actually had once.

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That Sinking Feeling: Chicago’s Pre-Broadway Tryout of The Spongebob Musical

—Originally published June 11, 2016—

[SPOILER ALERTS: Minor spoilers abound. To avoid the major spoilers, stop reading once the Girls board the L Train]

Meet the Hanslick Girls: Gwen, Eleanor and Dania. Created by writer Zach Barr, they are a trio of Northwestern students who always go to see plays together. They may not have the same opinions, but their conversations tend to make for an entertaining read. Recently, the Girls, along with Gwen’s younger sister Hazel, saw the world premiere of Nickelodeon’s “The Spongebob Musical.” Let’s hear what they had to say on their way back from the theater…

 

Eleanor applauded politely, the sound of her clapping buried under the riotous cheering of the crowd, which ricocheted off the walls of the Oriental Theatre and drowned out the bows music. As each actor bowed, Eleanor glanced over to her right to see Dania’s reaction. Smiling wide, Dania was clapping in time to the music. Having seen “The Spongebob Theme Song” listed in the program, Eleanor could tell that Dania was at peak anticipation for the show’s true finale.

“Pick me up! Pick me up! I can’t see!”

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