Metropolis Performing Arts Centre Presents ANYTHING GOES Review– Cole Porter Music, P.G. Wodehouse Book

Arlington Heights theater stages historic 1934 musical with music and lyrics by Cole Porter and book by P.G. Wodehouse and Guy Bolton

Metropolis Performing Arts Centre ANYTHING GOES

A denizen of Chicago’s Bucktown/Wicker Park venturing to Arlington Heights on a weekend night might think that they are looking at the hip scene of their neighborhood a half a century hence. It’s downright buzzing on the early autumn streets near the Metropolis Performing Arts Centre, albeit with many a walker and oxygen tank in the restaurant crowds, and far less diversity . That’s even more the case when you venture into the theater lobby to see Anything Goes, a Cole Porter classic laced with P.G. Wodehouse zingers.

Metropolis Performing Arts Centre ANYTHING GOES
(left to right) Mark Pontarelli and Kaity Paschetto
Metropolis Performing Arts Centre ANYTHING GOES
Metropolis Performing Arts Centre ANYTHING GOES
(left to right) Connor Murray and Kaity Paschetto
Metropolis Performing Arts Centre ANYTHING GOES

Metropolis Performing Arts Centre Has Local Roots

Actually, by the applause-o-meter one can also tell that the audience is heavy on family and friends of the cast. In fact the press release for this production gives a shout out to two locals who are part of this 26 person ensemble. This is community theater – and this production as all at Metropolis seems to get a warm embrace from the community it serves. You don’t just see great costumes (Costume Designer: Rachel S. Parent) you also see a projected thank you to the Costumes sponsor-- Lynn and Doug Steffen. The theater clearly gets its share of local love.

If you lilt when you hear Cole Porter lyrics and bon mots from P.G. Wodehouse’s inimitable pen, you too might likely be drawn to this lighthearted boy-gets-girl-despite-the-odds musical. You hear classic tunes that have probably been saturating the musical ether of your life since before you became sentient—the title song, I Get a Kick Out of You, Let’s Misbehave, Blow Gabriel Blow, It’s De-lovely. It’s set on a boat with very effective lighting designs creating skies above that makes us feel at sea (Lighting Design: Michael Wagner Projection Design: .

There is an easy to appreciate all hands on deck—literally /figuratively—pre-intermission tap dancing number where you get to admire the hard work and rehearsals that no doubt were required to create that ensemble moment. Some of the more campy acting that helps transport this story into the 21st Century- especially by comic actors Mark Pontarelli and Connor Murray - give the performance welcomed juice. This 1934 musical is part of the musical theater canon and at some point any lover of musical theater should see it. However, this writer can’t really recommend this production to city dwellers as meriting the drive--- which took more than an hour from the North Side on a rainy Friday night. If you live near by and welcome an injection of live performance this might be a good pick.


Anything Goes

Music and Lyrics by Cole Porter

Original Book by P.G. Wodehouse & Guy Bolton and Howard Lindsay & Russel Crouse

New Book by Timothy Crouse & John Weidman


Anastasia Arnold (Angel/Virtue), Michael M. Ashford (Ensemble), Jordan Beyeler (Angel/Chastity; Dance Captain), Halle Bins (Ensemble), Chih-Jou Cheng (Luke), Maddie Dorsey (Erma Latour), Madelyne Forrester (Ensemble), Jessica Miret Garcia (Angel/Charity), Justice Good (Quartet 4, Purser), Nancy Greco (Mrs. Evangeline Harcourt), Sara Haverty (Angel/Purity), Jim Heatherly (Elisha Whitney), Jon Parker Jackson (Quartet 1, Fred), Nina Jayashankar (Ensemble), Joseph Kuchey (Ensemble), Brian Kulaga (Billy Crocker), Kelly Lohrenz (Ensemble), Sam Martin (Ensemble), Brandy Miller (Hope Harcourt), Connor Murray (Lord Evelyn Oakleigh), Kaity Paschetto (Ensemble), Mark Pontarelli (Moonface Martin), Peter Ruger (John), Wade Tischhauser (Ensemble; Dance Captain), Alexander Watson (Quartet 2, Rev. Henry Dobson), and Bryan J. Wlas (Quartet 3, Captain)


Directed by Robin M. Hughes, Music Directed by Kenneth McMullen, Choreographed by Christie Kerr. Designers are Marc Beth (Sound Designer), David Moreland (Technical Director), Rachel S. Parent (Costume Designer), Christopher Rhoton (Scenic Designer), Michael Wagner (Lighting Designer), and Jennifer Wernau (Properties Designer). Metropolis Executive Artistic Director is Joe Keefe. Metropolis Production Manager is William A. Franz, Assistant Production Manager is Abbie Brenner.


Thru November 2, 2019

Thursdays and Fridays 7:30 pm
Saturday 3:00 and 7:30 pm
Sunday 3:00 pm


Metropolis Performing Arts Centre
111 West Campbell Street
Arlington Heights, Illinois



For full-priced tickets and ticket availability information visit the Metropolis Performing Arts Centre website or call 847.577.2121.
Check for Half-Price Deals from Hot Tix:

Photos courtesy of Metropolis Performing Arts Centre.
Note: Picture This Post reviews are excerpted by Theatre in Chicago

Amy Munice

About the Author:

Amy Munice is Editor-in-Chief and Co-Publisher of Picture This Post. She covers books, dance, film, theater, music, museums and travel. Prior to founding Picture This Post, Amy was a freelance writer and global PR specialist for decades—writing and ghostwriting thousands of articles and promotional communications on a wide range of technical and not-so-technical topics.

Amy hopes the magazine’s click-a-picture-to-read-a-vivid-account format will nourish those ever hunting for under-discovered cultural treasures. She especially loves writing articles about travel finds, showcasing works by cultural warriors of a progressive bent, and shining a light on bold, creative strokes by fledgling artists in all genres.


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2 thoughts on “Metropolis Performing Arts Centre Presents ANYTHING GOES Review– Cole Porter Music, P.G. Wodehouse Book

  1. Such a strange characterization of vibrant Arlington Heights in this review – apparently not hip enough for a “denizen of Wicker Park”. If the only plays worth seeing are in theaters within a 10-minute Uber ride, you’ll miss a lot of fantastic theater. Metropolis Performing Arts Center draws plenty of theater lovers in appreciation of its talented casts and quality productions, even all the way from the city (gasp!). I am grateful for those who truly appreciate the availability of fabulous theater in the burbs AND in the city.

    1. Hey Jeanette- Sorry you read the comment that way. Actually, you will find MANY very HIGHLY RECOMMENDED reviews of plays in the suburbs in Picture this Post– Writers Theater, Music Theater Works, 16th Street Theater, Northlight, and also **** Metropolis!!! When a play is HIGHLY RECOMMENDED we are telling our readers to change their life and their plans and go see it, as we did for Metropolis’ Chorus Line, if memory serves. This just wasn’t one of them, imho. Our reviews always attempt to identify a best match audience for a particular production. Most of our readers are either in the city proper, the North Shore, the South suburbs, Indiana (for our Chicago edition) and not in Arlington Heights. Hence the warning. You are absolutely correct though- we are hungry for more theater lovers who want to pen reviews of suburban theaters because most of our theater writers happen to be struggling actors, directors etc sans cars. We have a different way of writing reviews and if you or anyone in your network wants to see our Writers’ Guidelines please write to me at Keep reading our magazine- you will find MANY recommendations for suburban and urban theaters alike and a best effort to identify a natural audience /best fit audience for plays that we rank as Somewhat Recommended. THANKS!

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