A Little History
Did you know that Camelot was once regarded as the most expensive and opulent production to have ever played on Broadway? It was the Spider-Man of its day.
Based on the book The Once and Future King by T.H. White, Camelot was created by the famous artistic team Lerner & Loewe (Alan Jay Lerner and Frederick Loewe) and this was the final musical to be produced from that partnership. It opened on Broadway in 1960 and ran for 25 months, won four Tony Awards, and starred the stunning Julie Andrews and Richard Burton. Thanks to the Anoka County Library, I listened to the soundtrack throughout my high school years and treasured gems like "The Lusty Month of May" and "What Do the Simple Folks Do?"
The Story and Performance
Camelot, at it's best is a place of magic, friendship, humor and idealism. The audience is rooting for the unlikely love between Guenevere and Arthur, as they have just met at the start of the play as a result of their newly arranged marriage. Their partnership is funny and heartwarming, which makes it tragic when Arthur's new best friend, Lancelot, and Guenevere unintentionally fall in love. The emotional aspect of the love triangle is explored in this musical as well as the serious legal implications of royalty dabbling outside of their marriage: Guenevere faces burning at the stake and our "protagonist" Arthur offers her little in the way of rescue.
The other Twin Cities Bloggers who were in the audience on opening night had mostly positive things to say about the production:
I was surprised that some of the other bloggers felt the story and script weren't as relevant to modern issue as they would have liked. However, I feel completely transported by this fairytale gone wrong. It is easy for me to buy into Arthur's idealism and work to make his kingdom more equitable for the lower class. And when Mordred comes onto the scene with the clear intention of grabbing power for himself with little thought to the impact on the rest of society, it reminds me of our current political realities.
"I just feel it's important to be romantic in our world today, to hang on, for dear life, to our dreams and aspirations. This is a play about Arthur's dream, but it's also a play about all of our dreams--dreams for a perfect world--if only for one brief shining moment."
Now through February 25, 2017
Come along to the idyllic kingdom of Camelot. Revel in the rich, deeply romantic legend of King Arthur and his beloved Queen, Guenevere. Celebrate the dashing Sir Lancelot, the gallant Knights of the Round Table, the mystical wizard Merlin and the Lady of the Lake from the mists of Avalon.
Beyond romance, noble quests and magic spells lie twisted plots, inner demons and betrayal – all threatening to snuff out Arthur’s dreams to build the greatest kingdom ever known – one where true justice and compassion reign supreme. The ideals of Camelot are ones we long for in our own day, making Camelot a hopeful legend for all time.
Discounts for students ages 5-17 and seniors ages 55+.
Camelot is approximately 2 hours and 45 minutes including one intermission.
Chanhassen Dinner Theatres
501 W 78th Street
Chanhassen, MN 55317
Follow Artfully Engaging on Facebook for all of Kendra’s newest reviews and show features.
Costume Feature: Beauty and the Beast interviews with Chanhassen cast members . . .