End of the Rainbow, written by British playwright Peter Quilter, is full of chills and thrills. Your heart soars as you listen to Judy Garland (played by the extraordinary Tracie Bennett) sing and breaks as you watch her final days on earth unwind. End of the Rainbow is like having front row seats to Garland's soul. The truth behind the mask she put on for all her adoring fans.
Set in a London hotel room, the year before Judy Garland dies, she struggles to make a comeback. She is exhausted and broken but taking a break is financially impossible. She is about to marry her fifth husband, Mickey Deans (played by Tom Pelphrey) while her accompanist Anthony (played by Michael Cumpsty), although gay, still pines for her love. A dynamic and codependent love triangle that Garland takes full advantage of...each of them wanting to give her what she needs. Her deep addiction to prescription drugs throwing her emotions to highs and lows tantamount to Kingda Ka. Mickey and Anthony trying to keep up with the next plunge...one trying to give her safety, the other feeding her habit.
There is something you fools do not understand. I am an addict. And when I want something, I can get it. ~Judy Garland
The play bounces back and forth from the hotel room to the Talk of the Town Cabaret seamlessly. You truly feel like part of her audience and that you are back in those moments with her. Tracie Bennett's voice is mind blowing...if you close your eyes...you would swear it is Judy on that stage.
Some of the featured songs you will hear:
(click to listen...some great videos on You Tube)
Somewhere Over the Rainbow
For Me and My Gal
I Can't Give You Anything But Love
Come Rain or Come Shine
and many more...
This is a true testament that life is not simple, nor is it usually what it seems for those that are famous. We have watched this story happen over and over to those lovely stars that we cherish. Judy's soul is now at rest....over that rainbow.
Heart wrenching, emotional and beautiful.
End of the Rainbow runs through March 11 on the McGuire Proscencium Stage
818 South Second Street
Minneapolis, MN 55415