Chicago Shimpo
Unforgettable Musical South Pacific is Now Showing in Oakbrook


• The Tony Award-winning musical “South Pacific” has been presented by the Drury Theatre in Oakbrook Terrace until June 17th. This production is directed by Victor Malana Maog with choreography by Otis Sallid and musical direction by Roberta Duchak.

• Robert Cuccioli and Samantha Hill take role of Emile de Becaue, a middle-aged French plantation owner, and Ensign Nellie Forbush, an American nurse, who was stationed on a South Pacific island during World War II. The two fall in love, but Forbush struggles to accept his mixed-race children. Rika Nishikawa plays role of Emile’s daughter.
• Cuccioli is well known for a Joseph Jefferson Award winner for his performance as Jekyll and Hyde in a Broadway production of Jekyll & Hyde from 1997 to 2001. Hill originated the role of Cosette in the 2013 Tony-nominated Broadway revival of Les Misérables.

• Another romance is that U.S. Lieutenant Joseph Cable falls in love with a young indigenous woman but agonizes for the social consequences if he marries her. On the other hand, Cable has a special assignment to drive out the U.S. enemy from neighboring islands, and to accomplish the assignment, Cable needs help from Emile who knows every inches of the area.

• “It’s not every day that a theater is brave enough to go into the complexity of race, patriotism, and loss,” Director Maog said in a release from Drury Lane Theatre. “Our creative team knows both the sweeping enchantment and the realities of this story on many levels. Choreographer Otis Sallid has broken numerous barriers in entertainment, and I wanted his inventiveness, passion, and bravery to infuse the conversations around this groundbreaking musical. We understand the responsibility to the many voices, heard and unheard, in this musical. In our storytelling, we’ll highlight both the romance and some bitter truths,” Maog continued.

• The original musical South Pacific was composed by Richard Rodgers with lyrics by Oscar Hammerstein II and book by Hammerstein and Joshua Logan. It was premiered in 1949 on Broadway and became a great hit.

• South Pacific also has been common in Japan. The Japanese version of South Pacific was first produced in 1966 by Toho, a major movie company. The first one was played by Toho’s big stars, Tadao Takashima and Fubuki Koshiji. The second time was played by Toho’s superstar Akira Takarada and Jun Anna in 1979, and the third time was played by Sakae Takida and Maki Ichiro.
• The Takarazuka Revue Company also played South Pacific in 1984 and 2013.
• Most recently, film/play couture association hosted South Pacific tour “Hello Musical Project” across Japan in 2015 and 2016.
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Musical South Pacific
Through June 17, 2018
Location: Drury Lane Theatre
100 Drury Ln, Oakbrook Terrace, IL 60181
Wednesdays: 1:30 p.m.
Thursdays: 1:30 p.m. and 8:00 p.m.
Fridays: 8:00 p.m.
Saturdays: 5:00 p.m. and 8:30 p.m.
Sundays: 2:00 p.m. and 6:00 p.m.
Single Tickets: $47 - $62
Senior Citizens start at $40 (matinees)
Dinner and show packages available
Box Office: 100 Drury Lane in Oakbrook Terrace
630-530-0111
Ticketmaster at 800-745-3000
Or visit DruryLaneTheatre.com


Robert Cuccioli (L) and Samantha Hill take role of Emile de Becque and Ensign Nellie Forbush.
(Photo: courtesy of Drury Lane Theatre)



A scene from musical South Pacific (Photo: courtesy of Drury Lane Theatre)