Odyssey Dance Theatre's Halloween show "Thriller" opened last night at Kingsbury Hall to an enthusiastic reception from a packed house. "Thriller" is in its twelfth year and has become a Halloween tradition for many Utahns. The show has grown over the years and now performs with multiple casts in multiple venues; it opened last week at the Covey Center for the Arts in Provo and at Weber State University, and it's also playing at Utah State University and Tuacahn Amphitheater in St. George.
ODT uses many of the same numbers year after year for "Thriller," and some of my favorites are the spectacular ensemble number "Curse of the Mummy," the amazing pas de deux "Frankenstein & Frankenstein," the entertaining special effects number "Dem Bones" and the spooky and surprising "Salem's Mass." The cast was terriffic; ODT consistently employs some of the best dancers in the country. The sets, lighting and special effects were excellent as well.
In addition to the dance numbers, "Thriller" includes funny performances by New York recording artist John Boy as Bubbles, the show's depressed clown emcee, and local singer Mindy Lilyquist as Lorena Bobbit. There are also a few interesting and scary film shorts throughout the show.
"Thriller" includes a lot of lighthearted fun, but it's also creepy and isn't for young children. Most children over the age of ten should be okay. If you sit if the front rows near the aisles, be prepared for an extra scare or two from performers coming off the stage. I enjoyed "Thriller" thoroughly, but I thought it was too violent and that far too many of the characters danced to their deaths.
Thriller by Odyssey Dance Theatre
Kingsbury Hall at the University of Utah
1395 E. Presidents Circle
Oct. 14-31 except Sundays, 7:30 p.m.
See website for discount offers and performances at other locations