Jane on Stage!

Jane on Stage!

We read the books; we read the fan fiction; we watched the movies,we  own the tattoos and the Band-Aids – or is that only me? Regardless, you get my point – Jane is in all things… And now we have a play!

For my birthday, I was presented with a seat a the Chicago Shakespeare Theater’s World Premier production of…

Sense and Sensibility. The Musical.

I’ll be honest, I was a little nervous – Jane Austen on stage? A musical?

I’ll be more honest — even if the play turned out horrid, I knew I would enjoy it on some level and would probably giggle. After all… Jane Austen on stage? A musical?

I am happy to say, I was enchanted and delighted – and, yes, I spent the two hours grinning and giggling.

The cast did an outstanding job; the music was inventive and true to the story and accelerated the emotions beautifully; and the simple staging allowed the talent to carry the show – and they did the job beautifully. And, apparently, I’m not alone in thinking so:

It is not often that a new musical arrives in such pristine form. This could be sent directly to Broadway. Chicago Sun-Times

As you can tell, I’m not a critic. I don’t have any great words at my command like derivative, pedantic, aculeate or histrionic – not that I’d use any of those here. I might use effervescent, poignant, or winsome. But I came to the show with the same emotion and acumen I carry into all of Austen: An adoring fan ready to be enveloped in a wonderful story – and if there’s music, all-the-better. I’ll simply say: “IT WAS SO MUCH FUN!”

I’m not sure about the show’s future or if it’s heading to other cities, but here’s the link to the website if you’d like to check it out. It’s another reminder that the brilliance of Jane Austen is still alive and well – and we knew it first.

Go Jane!

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May 21, 2015 4:07 PM

I’ve never seen a musical version of any of Jane Austen’s works but I have seen a stage version of Pride and Prejudice. It was an open air production in front of Harewood House (Pemberley in Lost in Austen) some years ago. There were only five cast members, who played all of the roles between them. They put on a marvellous show, not least because of the major thunderstorm raging around us. Hey, it was August in Yorkshire, what more could you expect? Just about all of the dialogue was taken from the original apart from the occasional piece of narration and even that was mostly original, too.

May 21, 2015 6:08 AM

Jane Austen on stage sounds interesting. If Sense & Sensibility comes to New York I would seriously consider it.

Sheila L. M.
Sheila L. M.
May 20, 2015 2:39 PM

I did see a production of Pride and Prejudice done at DeSales University nearby, Their theater department is well known: they do a Shakespeare production(s) on a regular basis as well as other plays. I can only hope this one travels close enough for me to see it.

Sheila L. M.
Sheila L. M.
May 21, 2015 10:56 AM
Reply to  kreaybooks


Brenda Webb
May 20, 2015 12:07 PM

I am glad you were not disappointed Katherine! But, I don’t think a true JA fan could be totally disappointed to see her work on display. Maybe the music but not the words. 🙂 Thanks for sharing your experience. I wish I could see it but, alas, I am in Alabama.

Jennifer Redlarczyk
Jennifer Redlarczyk
May 20, 2015 9:13 AM

Hey, I live in Indiana, about an hour from the city and completely forgot about the musical until you mentioned it here. I’ve seen P&P in a play version around the city, wasn’t wild about the music I watched on YouTube for the musical, but will see if DH wants to go. Thanks for sharing. Jen Red

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