BILLY ELLIOT REVIEWS: MEDIA THEATRE 2015

Below are excerpts from Billy Elliot reviews at the Media Theatre November 2015

 

Rachel Beecher for DC Metro Theater Arts

"Mrs. Wilkinson, played by Anne Connors, exhibited the perfect archetype of a chain-smoking dance teacher with a heart of gold. Her song “The Letter (Mum’s Letter)” was an emotional tear-jerker, while “Shine” and “Born to Boogie” were loads of fun. Connors and Ranalli had great chemistry together, and as Mrs. Wilkinson, Connors showed her love for Billy and it was so apparent and beautiful to watch."

 

Jim Rutter for The Inquirer

"However, from a thematic standpoint, director Geoffrey Goldberg's show inspires in its juxtaposition of the numbing conditions of the working class and the emotionally cathartic power that dance can offer to a young boy starved by circumstance and searching for an outlet.

He finds that outlet in Mrs. Wilkinson's (Anne Connors) after-school ballet classes at 50 pence per session, something akin to what you might have found at a YMCA in 1984, the year in which the musical is set. Connors, like a street busker, offers a deep performance that embodies the hardscrabble exterior of an aesthete peddling her wares, delivering with verve an evening of lines filled with more blisteringly funny retorts than a stage comedian. She balances this tough exterior against a tenderness tethered to the hope that one young child might escape economic and intellectual blights."

 

Neal Zoran for NealsPaper

"You crave the sardonic discipline Connors' Wilkinson provides...Thank heaven for the absolute core of reality Connors provides....Connors is so strong,versatile, and believable in her role...Connors was suberb, as good a Sandra Wilkinson as ever took the stage....Everything Connors does is in the right proportion for the moment. Her presence galvanizes the first act of Goldberg's production. When anything goes awry, Connors' presence restores pace, clarity, and involvement. Her Mrs. Wilkinson is a wonderful achievement, one to be remembered and savored."

 

 

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