Pinocchio: A Folk Musical | Filament Theatre | Theater & Performance | Chicago Reader
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click to enlarge Roberto Jonson

Roberto Jonson

Dominick Maino

When: Saturdays, Sundays. Continues through March 6 2016
Price: $5-$20
This musical adaptation of the Carlo Collodi classic starts poorly. Exposition gets swallowed up in a song that seems too wordy and abstract for the target audience of small children. The magical block of wood from which old Gepetto carves Pinocchio is represented by a violin, creating further confusion. And Pinocchio himself begins life by laughing and crying unrestrainedly. A four-year-old might be excused for thinking s/he's seeing a play about a bipolar fiddle. But things improve over the course of the show's 60 minutes. Adapter/composer Tyler Beattie, director Scott Ferguson, and a musically talented cast lavish sweet-humored charm on Collodi's tale of a puppet (or, more accurately, a piece of pure id) who becomes real by learning the importance of service, study, and work. Before long, the only significant problem is the unwieldy wig Roberto Jonson has to wear as Pinocchio. —Tony Adler

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