This week in theater: 'Rock of Ages' rolls into Minneapolis

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The touring Broadway production of "Rock of Ages" hopes to have "Nothin' but a Good Time" in Minneapolis as it takes stage Friday through Sunday at the Orpheum Theatre.

The long-running Broadway production -- which turned into a feature film starring Tom Cruise last summer -- uses 28 hits from the 1980s the love story between a small-town girl and a young musician, who are both seeking rock 'n' roll stardom.

In a review of the production's tour stop in Sacramento, Calif., earlier this year, the Sacramento Bee said while the stage version of "Rock of Ages" lacks "Cruise's magnetic, sinuous star turn as rocker Stacee Jaxx," it surpasses the film version.

Noting the only thing the movie version had going for it was Cruise, the stage production, by contrast "features lively dance numbers, setting-appropriate bawdiness (toned down in the movie) and the visceral thrill of screaming guitar solos played by a live band on stage for the show's duration."

Meanwhile, the Guthrie Theater’s latest production “The Primrose Path,” continues at the Wurtele Thrust Stage in Minneapolis.

The world premiere production got a mixed review from Pioneer Press critic Dominic Papatola, who writes Whittell’s script “has some lovely language and sketches out a number of interesting ideas and characters.”

However, the critic adds, the long first act drags on and the play “can’t ever decide if it wants to be a comedy of manners, a melodrama, a proto-Chekhovian study of tortured provincial Russian country folk striving mightily to be sophisticated … or something else.”

The play runs through June 15.

The Children’s Theater Company’s latest, the stage adaptation of “Alice in Wonderland” continues this week in fully re-imagined production of Lewis Carroll’s classic tale.

Critic Lisa Brock gives high praise to the production in her Star Tribune review, saying “CTC’s foray into Wonderland sizzles with surprises, from kitchens and tea parties that pop out of the floor to chairs that fly through the air and bottles that mysteriously empty themselves and then vanish altogether.”

Brock also calls the production is” a scenic wonder, with set pieces and puppets taking on lives of their own.”

“Alice in Wonderland” at the CTC runs through June 15.

Ending Saturday is the ice fishing comedy “Nice Fish” at the Guthrie Theater’s McGuire Proscenium Stage.

Dominic Papatola calls the the play “a decent catch” in his review for the Pioneer Press, but does note the production has some issues.

Graydon Royce’s review in the Star Tribune is also mixed, who, like Papatola, criticizes the show’s run time, saying it’s “too long and undisciplined, overreaching its scope and ambitions.”

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