Bright blue stage lights fill the room and the audience starts to applause. The cast of Newsies steps onto the stage for the first scene in which Jack Kelly and Crutchie talk and sing about dreams of living a life with better opportunities.
Disney’s Newsies is based on real history that happened in the late 1800s. The Newsboys’ Strike of 1899 was the historical building block of this musical. The story takes place over 3 days and in stage time, 2 and a half hours.
Actors and actresses tap dance, sing, jump around, and make jokes on stage, but the overall musical gives a powerful message to everyone. Losing hope is one thing, but giving up is a completely different subject. The Newsboys’ of New York in the late 1800s had almost no workers rights, and this real event sparked the start of them. Without giving up, the Newsboys’ made history and thankfully, inspired this musical.
The characters in the musical were real people. Joseph Pulitzer, the antagonist of the show, owned The World, and in the musical “The World Will Know”, the cast sings about the spark of the strike and the fact that they are workers and deserve the same rights as Pulitzer.
The soundtrack is astonishing. At first, the Chessy Disney vibe comes out, but as the second act starts, the emotions really shine through.
Disney’s Newsies is in Chicago now at the Marriott Theater. Although it is a different cast than the Original Broadway Case, they do an amazing job with the show. Give it a listen, you won’t regret it.