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The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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Chicago “Razzle Dazzles”

Chicagos+Roxie+Hart+becomes+a+local+celebrity+after+killing+her+former+lover.
Photo by Provided

Chicago’s Roxie Hart becomes a local celebrity after killing her former lover.

As the longest-running American musical in Broadway history, Chicago provides audiences with a unique experience and a story about celebrity, corruption and crime.
The touring Broadway cast of Chicago made their College Station debut in Rudder Theatre on Tuesday as part of OPAS’ 45th season. With minimal props, an onstage orchestra and a risqué wardrobe, the musical stood out from any other show this season, which seemed to fare well with the audience. Overall, the message of the show seems to be about the lengths people will go to in order to achieve fame. As the show’s Matron “Mama” Morton says, “In this town, murder’s a form of entertainment.”
Chicago is the story of Roxie Hart, a woman who murders her lover after she learns he is planning to leave her. After being imprisoned, Roxy meets Velma Kelly, a celebrity who is famous for being a murderess. Taking note from her fellow inmate and advice from her lawyer, Billy Flynn, Roxy creates a spectacle of her case and becomes a star. In his song, “We Both Reached for the Gun,” Flynn acts as a puppeteer for Roxy, coaching her through her testimonies for the trial. Carly Hicks, operations manager of OPAS, said the number was her favorite part of the show.
“I just thought it was really well-done and the way that they used the puppet on the string, imagery and dancers behind them were well used as well,” Hicks said.
Comedy is one of the most spectacular aspects of Chicago. With phrases like, “You know, some guys just can’t hold their arsenic,” the show offers witty humor which keeps audiences rolling. In addition, the unique score provides an exciting and busy feeling for audiences to enjoy. Christophe Caballero, dance captain and swing, said the overture is his favorite part of the show.
“For me, it’s fun because all the dancers are coming out and it’s like actors in a company getting ready with the curtains open,” Caballero said. “If they had props and set pieces, they’d be putting it all out, but instead they’re doing it through dance form. There’s always something different. You could watch the show eight times in one week and still not see everything that’s going on in the overture.”
Caballero said the show’s success can be attributed to its relatable message.
“The subject matter is timeless,” Caballero said. “When you look at people wanting to make themselves celebrities out of crime or they commit a crime to become a celebrity, it’s never going to go away. It’s really relevant and I think that’s why it’s been around so long.”
The show has evolved since its Broadway opening in 1975. Dylan Ratell, who plays Mary Sunshine in the show, said it is still incredible today.
“To me, it’s the epitome of musical theatre,” Ratell said. “I think they’ve trimmed all the fat from the show and it exists as it is, barebones, and it’s still incredible every night and incredible to listen to.”

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