By Joe Contreras, Latin Life Denver Media
“I’ve got a Golden Ticket, I’ve got a Golden Ticket, I’ve got a Golden Ticket” seems like ever since I saw Roald Dahl’s Charlie and Chocolate Factory opening night I have not been able to get that tune out of my head. Nor the opening number “Candy Man”, Nor “Pure Imagination” which is hypnotizing.
The play is a magical, musical mystery tour as we are taken on a dark ride inside the famed Willy Wonka Chocolate factory along with the other five golden ticket winners. Their parents will be joining us as well.
Willy Wonka has decided to make few precious golden tickets available hidden in the wrapping of his famously popular chocolate bars. Five children from around the globe have discovered theirs and we are introduced to them via individual production numbers all about them.
There’s Charlie of course. Charlie Bucket whose family is so desperately poor that Charlie must buy old produce from a homeless looking lady who sells it out of grocery cart she pushes around town. Charlie is only entitled to only one Wonka Chocolate Bar a year and only on his birthday which is months away when the contest starts. Even then he is not assured there will be a golden ticket inside.
There’s the gum chewing Violet who inflates to an explosive demise. There’s the headphone, cell phone obsessed Mike TeaVee (TV), who plays video games to no end. When he complains he can’t gets an internet signal, Wonka, who’s fed up with his infatuation grabs the phone throws it to the ground and stomps on it. “How’s that for a signal?” he asks Mike. Let’s just say that Mike gets shrunk down to size.
There’s the Chubby Agustus Gloop who can’t resist the chocolate waterfall much to his misfortune as well. Finally the Russian Ballerina Veruca Salt who prances and dances her way to her end. They say bad things happen to bad children and so it goes. But what about Charlie? He’s not so bad.
The first act of the show set’s all this up. It’s after intermission that the real ride begins. The lighting, technical and visual effects release your mind on a trip of pure imagination as you venture into the various rooms and depths of Wonka’s chocolate factory.
The Oompa-Loompas, Wonka’s Munckin like factory workers almost steal the show. The performers are dressed in puppeteer all-black, so that only their faces are visible beneath bright orange wigs. Kneeling, they use their black-gloved hands to manipulate the short arms and legs of tiny puppet bodies. They are so fun to watch.
With the exception of the three rotating 12 year olds that play Charlie all of the other children’s roles are played by adults which is also fascinating.
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory truly was a golden experience rich in pure imagination. As Willie Wonka says. “You have to believe it to see it’.
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory plays the Buell Theatre at the Denver Center for the Performing Arts through July 28th.
See below for ticket discounts and opportunities to further experience this wonderful production.
Denver Center for the Performing Arts Broadway is thrilled to present Roald Dahl’s CHARLIE AND THE CHOCOLATE FACTORY, at The Buell Theatre. Roald Dahl’s amazing tale is now Denver’s golden ticket with many “Must Be Believed to Be Seen” events. Experience the wonders of Wonka like never before through July 28.
Family 4-Pack for $159
Share this sweet surprise with your whole family! Use code WONKA to get a family 4-pack for only $159.Family 4-pack is available in Price Level 2 on Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Sunday evenings only. Not valid on a prior purchase. Subject to availability. Restrictions apply.
Original Broadway Costume on display
Check out Christian Borle’s Willy Wonka costume from the Broadway production on display in The Buell lobby until July 28
Kids’ Night on Broadway July 25
Kids see Roald Dahl’s CHARLIE AND THE CHOCOLATE FACTORY free with a full paying adult with promo code: KNOB. Restrictions apply. Ticketed patrons attending the July 10 evening performance and/or July 25 matinee performance are invited to come to the theatre starting one hour prior to curtain for family activities in the lobby. In addition, with the purchase of each adult entrée, kids receive one free kids’ meal off of the kids’ menu at Hard Rock Cafe. Dinner reservations: 303.623.3191.
First Broadway Show Celebration July 25
Roald Dahl’s CHARLIE AND THE CHOCOLATE FACTORY is an excellent entry for many patrons into the world of Broadway. The DCPA and The Broadway League are rolling out the welcome mat for first-time Broadway theatregoers of all ages in conjunction with Kids’ Night on Broadway. Patrons are welcome to celebrate their Broadway audience debut with “My First Broadway Show” stickers. Turn your program into a souvenir keepsake, or wear a sticker in your selfie—be sure to tag #FirstBroadwayShow. Get your stickers at the First Broadway Show table in the lobby at the July 10 evening performance and/or July 25 matinee performance
Talkback July 25
Ticketed patrons attending the July 10 evening performance and/or July 25 matinee performance may stay after the show for a Q&A with members of the company.
Pure Imagination Lemonade Stand with Cast Appearances | July 12
The Curtis Hotel is hosting a Pure Imagination Lemonade Stand in its lobby from 1:30 p.m. – 3:30 p.m. on Friday, July 12th. Guests mix & mingle and get photos taken with cast members from 2 p.m. – 2:30 p.m., while enjoying piles of sugary creations & confections and refreshing lemonade. Free & open to the public, all donations collected will go directly to the DCPA.
National Anthem | July 15
Members of the company are truly honored to sing the National Anthem and celebrate Colorado sports at the Denver Outlaws game on July 11 and the Colorado Rockies game on July 15.