Connect with us
Finding Neverland

The cast

There are many a show that flourish on the themes of the importance of imagination. Take, for example, Broadway in Chicago’s latest, Finding Neverland, now playing at the Cadillac Palace Theatre. This tale offers up the back story to the creation of the perennial boy who wouldn’t grow up, Peter Pan. With a book by James Graham including lines like, “be what you want to be” and songs written by composers and lyricists Gary Barlow and Eliot Kennedy, including “Dream the Dream,” it would seem the correct team was in place to craft something magnificent. With director Diane Paulus at the helm, this ship, I am sad to say, never really took off.  The action doesn’t get going until about 25 minutes into the story. While the initial run played for 17 months on Broadway, Neverland did garner the 2015 Fan Favorite Award for Favorite New Musical. Astonishing though, it was nominated for a whopping zero Tony Awards and was also notorious for Kelsey Grammer’s abrupt departure soon after. Based on the 2004 Academy Award-winning Miramax film, Finding Neverland had a great deal of surface charm, but is truly lacking substantive gravitas to pack any real emotional wallop.   

Finding Neverland

Kevin Kern, Tom Hewitt

This original musical focuses on the family at the heart of inspiration for Peter Pan.  The real Boy Who Wouldn’t Grow Up here is J.M. Barrie (Kevin Kern) a highly imaginative author who is tasked to write a new hit play by theater owner and producer, Charles Frohman (Tom Hewitt) the villain with no real teeth. Or in this case, hook. He preens around the stage well enough, but generating essential conflict, he does not. While seeking inspiration for a new play, Barrie headed to a London park where he encountered Sylvia Llewelyn (Christine Dwyer) a beautiful and kind natured widow with a team of boys of her own. Peter and Michael, names familiar to any “Lost Boy” found on the stage or any fan of the material in the audience. Peter (Ben Krieger) in particular was saddened by his own father’s passing and is reticent to initially connect with the “replacement father figure” that was Barrie. Only when Sylvia takes ill, does this family begin to gel. There is a little subplot early on centering on the salacious gossip surrounding married Barrie and widowed Sylvia and the exorbitant amount of time spent playing with her children. Surprisingly, this plot device doesn’t resonate as scandalous to the audience.  Barrie’s wife is portrayed so one note selfish that when she has an affair, she is quickly dismissed and forgotten entirely. That is the issue with most of the supporting cast on display. There are so many one note, ancillary characters at play, they are mostly just a fleeting, momentary distraction.

Finding Neverland

Christine Dwyer, Kevin Kern

I wish to spoil nothing, but anyone familiar with the tale knows the mother doesn’t live to see the end.  The most mesmerizing visual of the show is the scene when she passes. Surrounded by enough wind machines to rival a Beyoncé concert, and an array of golden confetti pieces showering from stage floor to the rafters, that moment was just striking. The musical could have ended there, but alas whimpers on for another 15 minutes. Inspiring coos and applause every time he crossed the stage, kudos must be given to animal trainer William Berloni.  The family dog hit his marks flawlessly the entire production.  Rounding out the creative team,  Suttirat Anne Larlarb’s period costumes were lovely, as was Scott Pask’s scenic design. The back drops relied heavily on projection design crafted by Jon Driscoll.  Lastly, Mia Michaels choreography was at best, a mixed bag. The vertical hopping about of the chorus in the opening number fashioned an odd visual.  As the story progressed, the elegant lines crafted in the couples musical interludes were romantic enough while remaining firmly family friendly.

Finding Neverland

Christine Dwyer

If a lovely score and genial story made for a fantastic musical experience, Finding Neverland would soar like a bird. Or, more appropriately, a Tinker Bell type fairy. This one never fully earned it’s wings.  There were quick moments of magic, but alas they were too few and far between.  About 20 minutes too long, Finding needs to look for surer footing to really set sail. A more compelling and dastardly villain would be where I would start.  There needed to be much more drama to really grab the viewer.  Rick Elice’s Peter and the Starcatcher certainly proved that to be true with surprisingly similar subject matter. However, if you are looking for an agreeable family outing activity, Finding Neverland is a safe bet.

 Broadway in Chicago’s Finding Neverland is now playing at the Cadillac Palace Theatre through December 4, 2016

Stephen S. Best is currently a freelance writer for the Times Square Chronicles, covering the performing arts scene in the greater Chicagoland area. He has been a theater aficionado for years, attending his first live production, Annie, at the tender age of six. After graduating from Purdue University, Stephen honed his skills attending live theater, concerts and art installations in New York and Chicago. Stephen's keen eye and thorough appreciation for both theater patrons' time and entertainment dollar makes him a valuable asset and his recommendations key. Stephen currently lives in downtown Chicago.

Food and Drink

Start You Up This Morning with The Rolling Stones and Keurig



For coffee lovers who love to rock, we love the new Keurig partnership with The Rolling Stones. Of course, we all wish we had a summer break like being a kid again, but for the adult who has to report to work duty in the morning we could not think of a more splendid thing!

The limited edition “Start Me Up” iced coffee kit makes the perfect cup of coffee to jump start you day and will have you singing all day long. A special blend made just for this edition has a nutty roast that’ll start you up with electrifying notes of strawberry.


Each of the “Start Me Up” iced coffee kits includes a custom designed K-Iced brewer and tumbler, “Start Me Up” K-Cup Pods designed to be perfect over ice, as well as access to an exclusive Spotify playlist curated by the iconic band to rock out to while you sip.

It will start you up in a way you never knew possible! The kits are available to purchase on


Continue Reading


The Language of Spring: Understanding the Meanings Of Popular Blooms




The language of flowers is a powerful symbol of expressing emotion. As spring continues, you may be enticed by a colorful tulip delivery at your local florist or market. Behind every bloom is a distinct meaning that can convey serious sentiments and bring joy and solace alike. Here, we will uncover the stories behind six of the most popular spring flowers so you can give your loved ones the perfect gift this season.

What Do Flowers Tell Us?

Flowers have captivated us throughout the ages with their beauty, vibrant colors, and sweet scent. From ancient mythology to more contemporary literature, the symbolic language of flowers has been associated with expressing emotion, surprise, and joy. But have you ever wondered what each flower is trying to tell us? What secrets lie beneath these delicate blooms? We will explore what flowers mean and how they can help communicate feelings in an eloquent yet intimate way.

Tulips: Symbolizing Happiness

SA tulip delivery is a sure way to brighten someone’s day. This versatile flower comes in many varieties, including late winter and spring blooms, and is associated with expressing happiness. Pairs perfectly with other early spring blooms such as daffodils and hyacinths for an extra special bouquet!

Daffodils: Proclaiming New Beginnings

Brightly lit yellow petals of daffodils signify new beginnings in life. Their fresh color palette speaks to a seasonal rebirth, helping us celebrate all the potential that lies ahead. Perfect for those embarking on new journeys or looking to make fresh starts this spring!

Ranunculus: Expressing Ardent Attraction

Ranunculus are multicolored blooms that express intense attraction with their delicate layers of ruffled petals. This eye-catching flower draws admiration wherever it goes and is often used at weddings as a sign of passionate love between two people.

Freesias: Representing Innocence & Friendship

Freesias are thought to represent innocence and friendship due to their light fragrance that evokes feelings of purity and warmth when gifted. A fitting bouquet for any occasion where strong bonds are at play: whether between parents, siblings, or friends!

Hyacinths Conveying Playfulness & Joy

The vibrancy behind hyacinths embodies joyful playfulness like no other flower can – so much so that they were dedicated to Apollo in Greek mythology who represented youthful exuberance! Gift these sprightly blooms to any lover of life who enjoys living every day like it is full of endless possibilities!

Peonies: Representing Romance & Good Fortune

Last but not least, peonies come packed with symbolism representing good fortune, compassion, romance, and even bashfulness. It is no wonder these flowers (which can weigh up to 2 pounds!) have been revered since ancient times as symbols of wealth and beauty making them perfect for expressing your heartfelt love this season!

Bonus: Boost Your Knowledge about the World of Flowers

For those looking to explore flowers in greater depth and discover more of their hidden messages, several books offer a wealth of knowledge. From growing flowers to caring for them in vases to learning the language of flowers, these books can provide invaluable insight into the world of blooms. After all, it is always curious to find out more about the meanings behind the lovely bouquets that we give and receive.

The Language Of Flowers by Vanessa Diffenbaugh is a remarkable book that delves into the Victorian traditions associated with different types of flowers. Through poignant stories, readers gain a better understanding of why certain blooms have taken on such powerful meanings over time.

The Flower Expert by Dr. D. G.Hessayon is another great resource for mastering the art of flower care. Covering topics ranging from flower selection and cutting techniques to creating bespoke mixed bouquets, this book offers step-by-step instructions on how best to care for your flowers so they can last longer in your home or garden.

Grow, Harvest, & Arrange Stunning Seasonal Blooms from Floret Farm’s Cut Flower Garden is a must-have guide for any aspiring florist or home gardener. This book takes you through the basics of flower gardening and arranging so you can create beautiful bouquets with your home-grown blooms. From seed selection to harvesting techniques, it provides a comprehensive how-to manual on growing stunning seasonal flowers.

Flowers are truly magical gifts that unlock deeper emotional connections through their various meanings. Taking the time to consider which type best reflects what you wish to express helps create meaningful gifts that last much longer than their shelf life. With their amazing semantic and aesthetic value, flowers have everything necessary to offer both the giver and the receiver the pleasure associated with their timeless language this springtime!

Continue Reading


How To Help Your Adult Children




As parents, your main job is to support your children and help them grow into happy, healthy, successful adults. You do this by providing guidance, advice, and practical things like food, clothing, and shelter. You’ll also do this by giving them love and letting them know you’re there for them.

None of this changes just because they get older, and although parents would hope their adult children are equipped with all the knowledge they need to live their own lives well, sometimes they will be faced with challenges, and it could be that the parents need to be there to help them. With that in mind, here are some of the best ways to help your adult children.

Have Open Communication

One of the very best things parents can do for their children at any age, and certainly as they grow into adults, is to make sure the children are aware they can talk to the parents about anything and everything. Keep your communication channels open at all times. Ensuring that you can both have frank and honest discussions about whatever it is you need to talk about is vital. When your child talks to you, make sure you don’t judge and listen carefully before offering advice.

If you can have these open communication channels, your adult child is more likely to come to you when they have a problem, whether it’s something serious like needing drink driving solicitors or something smaller like wanting some dating advice. After all, you can only help if you know what the issue is in the first place.

Financial Guidance

One of the biggest issues many adults have is linked to money. Once they start earning money, it can be hard to deal with it responsibly, especially if they have no major bills to pay and they are still living at home. However, this is a bad habit to get into, and it can lead to some big problems in life. Debt can be debilitating, and it’s an easy thing to get into.

This is why you should offer financial guidance to your adult children. Give them practical help when it comes to budgeting and saving and ensure they understand how to build a strong foundation for their future.

It might be that your adult children have some financial problems and need some help. How you handle this will be your choice, but if you decide to loan them money, make sure you have a proper agreement in place and ensure they pay you back – this will help them be more responsible and help you financially too.

Encourage Independence

It’s hard to let children grow up and be their own person; as a parent, you’ll always want to guide them, and you might have ideas about what they should or should not be doing. When they are children, you can have your say and do things to stop certain behavior or encourage it. However, when your children are adults, you no longer have such control, and that’s a good thing – your children need to learn how to be independent.

To help with this, you need to be encouraging about their choices and help them only when they ask you to. It’s important that they work things out independently and learn from their mistakes, but they also need to know you are there for them when they need you.

Continue Reading


Tabitha Brown That’s Your Business Farmer’s Market in NYC



Tabitha Brown is coming to NYC! On Tuesday, June 6th. Vegan actress and social media personality Tabitha Brown and McCormick will be hosting the free one-day-only “That’s Your Business” Farmer’s Market pop up from 12:30 PM – 4:00 PM (or until supplies last) at Studio 525 in Chelsea, NYC. Tabitha will be on-site to meet attendees and share all her favorite healthy eating tips and tricks!

 The event will be in celebration of the recent launch of five new salt-free, vegan seasoning blends and recipe mixes as part of the McCormick by Tabitha Brown collection and will highlight local produce with family-friendly games and photo moments. 

The location is at Studio 525, 525 W 24th Street.

Continue Reading


Dance In Times Square Today



Ailey comes to Times Square for a series of free outdoor dance classes led by Ailey Extension instructors and NYC dance artists. Classes are open to people of all ages and all levels of dance experience!. These dance workshops are presented by Ailey Extension and one will happen today June 2 at 5pm, Broadway & 46th St. The class is Broadway Jazz with Judine Somerville to register click here.

On Wednesday, June 7 at 6pm, at Broadway & 46th St LiveDance /Time: Study III with Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Company co-presented with New York Live Arts

Culminating its 40th Anniversary celebration, the world renowned Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Company makes its Times Square debut with /Time: Study III. This piéce d’occasion, featuring the outstanding performers of the company and guest musicians, marks the third annual New York Live Arts presentation in Times Square.

Continue Reading


Copyright © 2023 Times Square Chronicles