Mary Poppins | Cadillac Palace Theatre | Theater & Performance | Chicago Reader

Mary Poppins Closing (Theater and Galleries) The Short List (Theater)

When: Wednesdays-Sundays. Continues through Nov. 6 2011

The real star of this moneymaker is the middle-class nuclear family: Disney's 2006 stage version of its 1964 movie musical makes magical nanny Mary Poppins just one of many underlings who help the dysfunctional Bankses get on the road to recovery. Though the spectacle, dance, and singing give good value, most of the wit of P.L. Travers's Poppins books--based on delight in nonsense--has been excised. And five new songs render the show even less faithful. "Being Mrs. Banks" highlights the parents' relationship, and the empty "Anything Can Happen" is nothing more than an upbeat vehicle for a huge production number. The barbs of the books' tart, disapproving, wildly imaginative, and funny nanny have been replaced with the ho-hum psychology of an ordinary family. --Laura Molzahn

Price: $25-$90

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