The Chicago area's Apple Tree Theatre is having a hit with the Stephen Flaherty and Lynn Ahrens musical Once on This Island. The production, which was to close Dec. 26, will now run through Jan. 9, 2000. The Carribean-flavored musical is about a poor French Antilles girl who falls in love with an aristocrat from the wealthy side of the island, and whose love is then tested by the island gods. The show has a successful run on Broadway in the late 1980s. Flaherty and Ahrens went on to write Ragtime, for which they won Tony Awards.
The Apple Tree production is directed by Peter Amster, and is choreographed by Randy Duncan of the Joffrey Ballet. The cast features Felicia P. Fields, Nikkieli DeMone, Sean Blake, Gabrielyn Watson, Karla Beard and Anthony Christopher. Apple Tree Theatre is located at 595 Elm Place in Highland Park, Ill. (one block north of Central Avenue, two blocks east of Green Bay Road, and two blocks from the Highland Park Metra station). For tickets and information, call the Apple Tree box office, (847) 432-4335.
--By Robert Simonson