Theater Review: Cathy Rigby is Peter Pan

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Cathy Rigby is Peter Pan (March 1 – 3; All ages)
TPAC’s Jackson Hall
505 Deaderick St., Nashville
782-4040 • tpac.org
Show times: Fri 8 p.m., Sat 2 and 8 p.m., Sun 1 and 6:30 p.m.
Tickets: $15 – $60

The absolute BEST family musical EVER is flying through TPAC’s Jackson Hall this weekend with the spectacular production of Cathy Rigby is Peter Pan. This is an extraordinary musical for the whole family that is nothing but pure FUN, FUN, FUN!

Former Olympic gymnast Cathy Rigby is marvelous in her portrayal of Peter Pan, the boy who never grows up, and it’s simply remarkable how believable she is to this day playing this character — she’s played Peter for more than 30 years, and she’s 60 years old now! You’d never guess her age on stage, though, especially seeing her fly through the air so effortlessly doing an amazing amount of aerial flips, twists and turns. She is such a dynamic actress and athlete on all counts. Rigby totally convinces her audience that she is a mischievous boy on stage. She is simply mesmerizing start to finish.

This flawless production comes with a tight touring orchestra with a few local musicians along the way that provide an awesome musical backdrop for the cast singing on stage. Rigby’s vocals are on point throughout the show, as are ones from Brent Barrett (Mr. Darling/Captain Hook) and Jenna Wright (Tiger Lily). It’s fun to see youngsters on stage in a professional production, and those playing the Darling children — Krista Buccellato (Wendy), Lexy Baeza (John) and Hadley Belle Miller (Michael) — are superb.

Outstanding set design and lighting add to the overall wonder of this show, and, of course, the flying sequences provide the ultimate magic, but the true standout number is the percussion-centric “Ugg-a-Wugg” tune. It’s a musical masterpiece that is fiercely choreographed all the way. Rigby shines supreme with this.

Your children will absolutely LOVE this show, but even better, YOU will absolutely love this show. I’m pushing 42, but I felt like a little kid again watching Peter Pan fly in the air, and the way Rigby brings Peter to life is nothing short of magical.

It’s great fun and a memory-making outing for your little ones. I urge you to go see this with your kiddos. You’ll be glad you did.

 

 

Chad Young is the managing editor and arts/entertainment editor for this publication.

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