Charlie and the Chocolate Factory on Broadway

My daughters outside of the Lunt-Fontanne Theatre in Manhattan.

Looking for a show to see? Are you a Roald Dahl fan? Both?

“Unwrap a world of pure imagination.”

My youngest daughter loves Broadway shows, so what better way to celebrate her birthday than to surprise her with tickets to see Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, The New Musical in Manhattan?  We appreciate Roald Dahl’s dark humor and twisted characters (We loved “Matilda the Musical.”), not to mention that Willy Wonka is played by Christian Borle who was excellent as Shakespeare in “Something Rotten.”

One of my favorite childhood movies was Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. I saw the newer version, and didn’t mind Johnny Depp playing a deeply disturbed Willy Wonka, but Gene Wilder’s Wonka stuck in my psyche.

The musical is wonderful! The set design is clever, interesting, colorful and illusional. The larger than life characters are modern, and each has his/her own “voice.” The humor is both timeless and relevant to the times, and, of course, of course, the story is evergreen. The messages that imagination is valuable, dream big, and work for your passion makes me–sniff-a little weepy.

Oh and, hon, the Oompa Loompas are hysterical!

Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, The New Musical

I thought most people knew the story, but at the Broadway show the woman sitting behind us seemed genuinely surprised when Veruca Salt, Violet Beauregard, Mike Teavee, and Augustus Gloop met their sweet rewards, and when Charlie Bucket was the last child standing. The show’s website describes the story like this:

Willy Wonka, world famous inventor of the Everlasting Gobstopper, has just made an astonishing announcement. His marvelous—and mysterious—factory is opening its gates…to a lucky few. That includes young Charlie Bucket, whose life definitely needs sweetening. He and four other golden ticket winners will embark on a mesmerizing, life-changing journey through Wonka’s wondrous world. Get ready for chocolate waterfalls, exquisitely nutty squirrels and the great glass elevator, all to be revealed by Wonka’s army of curious Oompa-Loompas.

Birthday girl.

Have you seen a good show lately? I’m always interested in what else is on stage.

 

 

Creative Cupcakes (Little Shop of Horrors)

A Sun Star plant along with Brussels sprouts and cabbages welcome theatre goers. "Audrey II's" and photo care of my friend Lynn.

A Sun Star plant along with Brussels sprouts and cabbages welcome theatre goers. “Audrey II’s” and photo care of my friend Lynn.

LITTLE SHOP OF HORRORS + CAST PARTY = AN AWESOME THEME

Hon, you know how I love a theme?  

There’s someone who loves themes even MORE THAN ME!

I asked Lynn, mom of “Seymour” in our middle school’s production of the macabre musical Little Shop of Horrors, to show me how to work with fondant. We tag-teamed baked and decorated 100 cupcakes for the cast party.  My Plus-One (as in Triplets Plus One) was an Urchinette.  She wore a gold sequined dress and teased hair (shout out to Emma’s grandma) to Doo-Wop her heart out along with the other Urchins.  The cast and crew’s hard work paid off.

The show was excellent!  Our kids were stars!  What fun!

Creative Cupcakes

Here’s how we made edible “Audrey II’s,” the mysterious man-eating plant in LSOH.

Step 1.  Gather your ingredients.  Rather than make fondant from scratch, we used Fondarific. Supplies included cake mix, baking cups, canned icing, Wilton icing, food coloring, rubber gloves, romaine lettuce, spoons,wax paper, Wilton Decorating Bags and Tips, Swedish Fish candy and Cake Boxes.

Icing and Fondarific.

Icing and Fondarific.

Baking cups and food coloring.

Baking cups and food coloring.

 

 

 

 

 

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Step 2.  Prepare fondant decorations.  After the Fondarific was warmed and softened, rubber gloves were donned, and food coloring was mixed in by hand.  Small balls of fondant were pressed onto spoons. Then romaine leaves rubbed onto fondant created leaf impressions.  After carefully lifting fondant leaves off of spoons, they were layered with wax paper and left to set.  (I put them in a container covered with foil, not refrigerated, overnight.)  The leaves needed to be stiff enough to stand up, but pliable enough to form LSOH’s man-eating plant.

Add food coloring to icing and softened fondant.

Soften fondant.  *Put on rubber gloves BEFORE blending food color into it.

Form leaves--or whatever shape you want--and let them set a bit.

Form leaves–or whatever shape you want–and let them set.

 

 

 

 

 

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Step 3.  Bake cupcakes according to package directions. Food coloring was also mixed with vanilla canned icing then spread on cooled cupcakes.  Icing the cupcakes kept them fresh while the fondant leaves set overnight and formed a base to work on.

Bake cupcakes.

Bake cupcakes.

Ice cupcakes once they've cooled.

Ice cupcakes once they’ve cooled.

 

 

 

 

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Step 4.  Assemble Audrey II’s (or whatever decoration goes with your theme).  Lynn said that, though the canned icing was good for a base, the stiffer Wilton icing made better leaves surrounding the “plants” and fangs on the Audrey II’s.  She used Wilton Tip #103 to form surrounding leaves and Tip #4 for the fangs.  Mini Swedish Fish candies became tongues.  Eww and yum!

Assemble cupcake decorations.

Assemble cupcake decorations.

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"Whatever you do, don't feed the plants!"

“Whatever you do, don’t feed the plants!”

Headed to the cast party.

Cupcakes with bite!

 

Cast and crew.

Cast and crew.

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Have you ever worked with fondant?  Did you find it easy or hard to use?  What did you make?  Thanks for sharing!