Man of La Mancha (stage review)

Stage review from The Movie Snob

Man of La Mancha, performed by WaterTower Theater in Addison. I have a soft spot in my heart for this musical because it was the first one I ever saw — although my view was rather obstructed because I was behind the set playing in the (high school) orchestra. And now I am in the middle of reading Don Quixote, so I was even more to hear that the show was being staged. It’s a good production–solid acting, excellent sets and costumes, and generally acceptable singing. The setting is 15th century Spain, and author Miguel de Cervantes has just been thrown in prison to await trial before the Inquisition. His cellmates, a ragged band of thieves and prostitutes, begin to strip him of all his possessions, including a large manuscript. To persuade them to give the manuscript back, he stages an impromptu play–Don Quixote, in which he plays the deluded knight, his manservant plays the squire Sancho, and his cellmates play all the rest of the parts. There are several memorable songs, most famously “The Impossible Dream.” But be warned that this is not a show for children; there is lots of vulgar language and behavior, and also a very vividly enacted rape scene.

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