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Blog Posted in avatar   Tim O'Brien's Blog

Stars Shine On This 'Sunset'

blog:11853:0::0
By Tim O'Brien
Posted Jun 2, 2011 in
FIRST LOOK
"Sunset Boulevard" - Timber Lake Playhouse
By Tim O'Brien
AM 1240 WSDR
O'Brien News Service
MT. CARROLL - It's no coincidence that the theme for the 50th season at Timber Lake Playhouse in Mt. Carroll is "New Ways To Dream."
That is what the business they are in is all about. Plus, that is also a recurring theme in the kickoff production, "Sunset Boulevard," by Andrew Lloyd Webber.
From the outset, the audience is transported both in time and place. That place is Hollywood and the time is the Golden Age, where dreams are made and broken, only with hopes of being rediscovered and loved once again. And it's that line between reality and illusion that always seem to overlap.
This TLP production plays perfectly into that theme, and the audience itself feels like they are playing a part in the lives of these characters. Most notably, Norma Desmond (Katherine L. Condit), Joe Gillis (Brandon Ford), Betty Schaefer (Colleen Johnson) and Max Von Mayerling (John Chase).
Each portrayed was played to perfection and the singing top-notch. Once cared about these characters, and our hopes and dreams were dashed right along with theirs.
Yet, at times, this play is haunting and exhilarating, and then downright heartbreaking.
Simply put, this is a stunning adaptation and the ideal way to start what is sure to be a fine summer for that theater in the woods, known as Timber Lake Playhouse.

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