Stage tip: "Next to Normal"
Next to Normal
Chestnut Street Playhouse, Norwich
The idea of a musical revolving around bipolar disorder is certainly unexpected, but don’t be dissuaded. Playwright-lyricist Brian Yorkey and composer Tom Kitt created an utterly absorbing, deeply moving and occasionally funny musical in “Next to Normal,” in which a family deals with the fallout of the mother’s longstanding battle with bipolar disorder. The characters are complex, the storyline involving, and the pop-rock score tuneful. Not only that, but the Chestnut Street Playhouse production is marvelous, thanks to Hunter Parker’s direction and the cast’s performances, particularly by Lisa Foss as the mother and Brett Boles as her husband. The show runs through Feb. 24. Tickets are $27 adults, $25 seniors, $15 kids/students; visit www.chestnutstreetplayhouse.org.
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The cast is expansive, consisting of 26 students. Another 20 to 30 teens are working behind the scenes.