A touching, life-affirming Come from Away

Although retired since 2014, I still relish opportunities to teach, write, and share opinions.

The seven-time Tony-award-winning musical Come From Away returns for a run at the Philadelphia Academy of Music until February 12. 

On September 11, 2001, the United States was under attack from terrorists unknown. Thousands died at New York’s World Trade Center, a gay man saved Washington, D.C., from attack by being part of a group who overcame the terrorist who intended to attack either the White House or Capitol Building, bringing the plane crashing down in a Pennsylvania field. Yet another attack happened at the Pentagon. All this caused U.S. airspace to close immediately to all air traffic. Come From Away details how 38 planes were diverted to Gander, Newfoundland, for five days. The thousands of inhabitants housed, fed, and clothed the thousands of stranded airline passengers, while also comforting all who needed it. This musical is their story.

This touring company features a number of excellent actors, many assuming multiple roles, whether passengers, Canadians, foreign travellers, a rabbi, a gay couple, and many other stories which add richness to the musical experience. Most of the creative talent have numerous honors, including Tony nominations and Awards, Olivier Awards, and Grammy nominations. Their work is beautiful to behold.

The many musical numbers are accompanied by an onstage band which is mostly hidden by trees, until they become part of the celebrations the citizens throw to lift the spirits of the displaced. Cameron Moncur conducted the lively ensemble, all performed without an intermission. It may come as a surprise that the music had a distinct Celtic sound. Clint Butler was an excellent Dance Captain. Scanning the diverse cast, your eyes may fall upon the name James Earl Jones II. He is a distant cousin of the acting legend James Earl Jones. 

We are especially lucky to have a return engagement of Come From Away. It first came to Philadelphia before the pandemic. This new tour is spectacular on all levels. It’s highly recommended. Don’t miss it.

The multiple award-winning musical Come From Away is at the Academy of Music only until February 12. It is part of a great season of Broadway Philadelphia presented by the Kimmel Center. Other musicals to come include Six, 1776, Cats, Moulin Rouge, The Lion King, and more.

For more information, call 215-893-1999, or visit www.kimmelculturalcampus.org   


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