Chris Jensen, SF Weekly
a huge amount of fun- the kind of production that’s sure to reduce even devout cynics into grinning fools…director Ben Harrison’s ingenious use of the overhead screen is one spectacle that’s entirely worth the distraction…kids will adore the show. Adults will likely adore it even more. I was delighted. At times I was even transported…
David Littlejohn, Wall Street Journal
unforgettable sequences…It’s like living in a Pixar film or a spectacular video game…the awfully big adventure of director Ben Harrison’s and designer Bill Dudley’s “Peter Pan.”
The Broadway Critic
The direction by Ben Harrison was creative and staged impeccably. I absolutely loved how he used the effects to tell the story It was obvious that the creative team worked together beautifully because everything worked flawlessly together. The second act was very touching and I got involved emotionally with the characters. The acting was superb. Peter Pan was a theatrical experience unlike I’ve ever had; it was absolutely breathtaking.
Paul Hodgins, Orange County Register
Trust the Brits to cut through the layers of Disney dross… celebrates the magic and the message of the story in a way that’s true to Barrie’s vision yet still ultimately joyous, playful and uplifting. Above all, this “Peter Pan” is grandly and unabashedly theatrical – an appropriate homage… director Ben Harrison takes a nicely nuanced approach, and he isn’t afraid to slow the pace in those places that we naturally want to linger. The flight over London is a leisurely tour; the establishing scenes for Never Land are quiet and long enough to let us absorb its exoticism. Like everything else about this version of “Peter Pan,” Harrison’s directing style is undeniably English – respectful, not rushed, paying attention to character relationships you’ve probably never noticed before. It leaves you with the feeling that Barrie’s century-old tale is in the hands of people who understand him and his story, too.
Tom Titus, O.C. Now
Director Ben Harrison and William Dudley — who designed the setting, costumes and 3D production — have created a wondrous Neverland that begins where the vintage Disney animated movie left off. The circular stage smoothly transforms from a nursery to a wooded hideaway to a pirate ship, while the characters emerge from all directions, including up from below. The title role of the boy sprite who never grew up is played with glorious gusto by Nate Fallows, who soars to new heights and meets his match in the form of Wendy, the eldest of the three Darling kids, saucily played by Abby Ford. But for sheer show-stealing dominance, the show’s true centerpiece is Jonathan Hyde as the treacherous Captain Hook (as well as the Darling’s dad). Hyde brings a sinister sophistication to a role that invites — nay, encourages — egregious overplaying’.
Wendell Brock, Atlanta Journal-Constitution
directed by Ben Harrison, the East Coast premiere of designer William Dudley’s 3D version of the J.M. Barrie classic marries theater, circus and digital camera work into a marvelously inventive thrill ride Ciaran Joyce plays Peter with great pluck and a whisper of emerging sensuality. Peter seduces Wendyand here is portrayed as being pathologically predisposed to repeating his masterful game — a serial kidnapper. Joyce is excellent, summoning a performance that’s as psychologically thrilling as it is physically energetic.
Hedy Weiss, Chicago Sun-Times
the show, directed by Ben Harrison and spectacularly designed by William Dudley, contains many sequences of sweeping beauty and dreamy wonderment.
Dennis Polkow, New City Stage
What makes this threesixty version effective is that it really does work for both children and adults. ‘The effects are so dazzling that it is easy to forget that this is an illusion achieved as much by the movements of the actors as the scenery and wires, and a lot of care has gone into their movements. At one point, the characters are even underwater, and in addition to a psychedelic sea, the characters are moving in a manner that actually convincingly suggests real swimming. Such effects would mean very little taken by themselves, but happily, the acting is also first-rate and holds our interest throughout. Ciaran Joyce is not an androgynous or feminine Peter, but a masculine Peter who really does think, act and resemble a boy. Ditto with the lost boys who are at times edgy enough to be reminiscent of the groundless and ruthless lads in “Lord of the Flies.” Evelyn Hoskins also makes sure that her Wendy has a crush on Peter, yes, but it is a crush, nothing more. And we already start to see her responsibilities deepen that will have her growing up to the point where she will have to leave Peter behind. But in the meantime, she, her brothers and we are in for a wonderful time.
Tom Williams, Chicago Critic
Don’t let the visuals and special effects fool you, this Peter Pan is still a well acted piece of theatre that deftly tells its story in a most robust manic manner. This complex and tight production is a flawless blend of high visuals and traditional theatre that engages us with thrills and heartfelt fantasy. It gives us the opportunity to be a child again so we can experience the wonders of our unadulterated imagination to allows us to soar the heavens, to live adventures, and to escape from the real world. This Peter Pan is pure theatrical magic! Peter Pan is one of the finest touring shows to arrive in Chicago in years! It is the kind of show that begs to be seen more than once. Take the entire family to see Peter Pan – they’ll love you more for the experience.
A thrilling new production…it feels as if we are flying..the effect of the 360 projections is truly jaw-dropping…the captivating wonder of Peter Pan hooks all ages