Feb. 4 2009 12:00 AM

What some other critics think of ‘The Color Purple.’

If you read this paper often, chances are you’ve noticed it comes out every Wednesday, which puts us in a pretty good position to review those big touring Broadway shows at the Wharton Center before they’re gone, since they typically open on Tuesdays. But since the touring production of “The Color Purple” won’t open here until Thursday now (delayed from the already uncooperative Wednesday opening by uncooperative weather in other parts of the country last week), we’ve decided to crib some telling lines from recent reviews and present them here. The musical is based on the Putlizer-winning Alice Walker novel of the same name, which follows the tough life of an African-American woman and her sister in the American south.

In general, the critics seem mixed, praising the performances and pageantry while chiding the stage adaptation for not living up to expectations. Misha Berson, critic for The Seattle Times, writes, “The show is not a great artistic achievement. But for many, it’s a meaningful event.”

John Moore, of The Denver Post, calls the show “a playful and high-energy musical that is constantly high-stepping the tonal high-wire.” Moore also calls out the musical for downplaying the novel’s lesbian-love storyline and trying too hard to touch on all of the plot’s points.

On the sunnier side, Rick Rogers, of The Oklahoman, writes the show “may never rank alongside the musical theater’s finest creations,” but the show’s “fine cast” proves it still offers some compelling storytelling.

To find out what our critic has to say, visit us at www.lansingcitypulse.com on Friday.

Gamma on

What happens when you mix radioactive flowers, a resentful mother and unstable sisters? Find out this weekend when Williamston Theatre opens “The Effect of Gamma Rays on Man-In-The- Moon Marigolds.” The 1971 Pulitzer-winning play by Paul Zindel tells the story of a vindictive widow and the lengths she’ll go to tear down her daughters.

In an effort to keep live theater affordable, Williamston is offering an “Entertainment Stimulus Package,” special. All tickets purchased between noon and 6 p.m. Feb. 11 will be sold for the preview ticket price of $15. Feb. 5 through March 1. 8 p.m. Thursday & Friday, 3 p.m. & 8 p.m. Satudray, 2 p.m. Sunday. Williamston Theatre, 122 S. Putnam St., Williamston. $15-$24. (517) 655-SHOW.

Curtain call

Friends, family and theater fans will gather in Lansing Feb. 8 to remember BoarsHead co-founder Richard Thomsen, who died last November in New York. Thomsen and John Peakes started BoarsHead at its original location in Grand Ledge in 1966. During his 20 years with the company, he helped the theater find its home in Lansing and premiered several plays. Thomsen last returned to BoarsHead in 2006 to direct “Holiday Memories.”
4:15 p.m. at BoarsHead Theater, 425 S. Grand Avenue, Lansing.

The Color Purple

Feb. 5-8 1:30 p.m. & 7 p.m. Thursday 8 p.m. Friday 2 p.m. & 8 p.m. Saturday 1 p.m. & 6:30 p.m. Sunday $30-$63 1 (800) WHARTON www.whartoncenter.com