‘LOTR’ moves to the stage

By Brian Smith
April 27, 2006


J.R.R. Tolkien’s novel “The Lord of the Rings” has been adapted into a $27 million play. It premiered Thursday, March 23 in Canada’s Princess of Wales Theatre. It is currently the most expensive play ever made, but it has received mixed reviews from the critics.

The Toronto Star has posted several reviews of this play including one where theater critic Richard Ouzounian described, “why we’re left bored of the Rings” and that this play excited at first, but became dull later on. There were, however, an equal number of good and bad reviews from the critics at the Toronto Star.

Here at Cabrini, many students weighed in on how this play would turn out, while others were just hearing this plays existence.

“You can’t capture computer-generated images on stage, like you can in a movie,” Katie Ierardi, a sophomore computer information science major, said.

“They better take some parts of the movie and some parts of the book or it’ll be a disaster,” Todd Lembert, a junior business administration major, said.

“If it’s part musical it’s going to suck,” Kraig Lowrie, a freshman exercise science major, said.

Though students are skeptical, this play has also received its share of good reviews. Tolkien’s family likes this production.

“It’s very beautifully done,” said granddaughter Rachel Tolkien in a recent CBC article. “Everything that, to me, is the most important and most moving in the books is on the stage.”

Regardless of reviews, the producers are optimistic in their profits. While the play has cost $1 million a week to run, it is also grossing around $1.8 million a week so far. This production is making $15 million alone from ticket purchases made in advance, with the cost of a ticket at $125 dollars. All sales go towards paying off this play’s enormous budget.

With this $27 million budget, this play definitely has some special effects. The entire event took place a giant, 40-ton rotating set, with 17 elevators in the middle used for effects such as flying. The production required over 500 costumes for its 55 characters to change into during the three-and-a-half hour running time.

Of course, this “hybrid production,” as the shows producers call it, will cover all three of J.R.R. Tolkien’s books. However, it is widely considered a musical in many reviews.

This production of “Lord of the Rings” is set to run throughout the summer in the Princess of Wales theatre.

Loquitur welcomes your comments on this story. Please send your comments to: Loquitur@googlegroups.com . The editors will review your points each week and make corrections if warranted.

Posted to the web by Brandon Edwards

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Brian Smith

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