‘Mary Poppins’ at the Broward Center is Pure Magic

If you didn’t know, Slow Burn Theatre Co. is currently putting on their iteration of the classic tale of “Mary Poppins” at the Broward Center’s Amaturo Theater. The musical is a stage adaptation of the original movie, but here in south Florida, the magic feels extra real. South Florida Theater Magazine was present on opening night of Saturday, March 25, to report back that the next generation of theater-goers is well on its way to centerstage.

Before the performance began, as the crowd filled into their seats, Patrick Fitzwater, the director of Slow Burn, took the stage to address the crowd. This production of “Mary Poppins” is the biggest production the company has put on, with 32 members total. He emphasized that Slow Burn is your local theater company that makes you feel like you’re on Broadway. My time here has been short, but I found this statement to be true: Slow Burn has a robust quality about them that feels genuine to the art and soul of south Florida.

Slow Burn Theatre Co – Mary Poppins – Company – (Photo by Larry Marano)

At this performance, Fitzwater also mentioned that, in the company’s upcoming season, there are several family productions. This is because, not only do these productions have merit but, they believe it is important to usher in the new generation of theater-goers. By providing worthwhile experiences for children and the stage, a love for theater can be fostered for years to come and across generations. Dean J. Trantalis, mayor of Fort Lauderdale, was also in attendance, showing the sense of community.

Slow Burn Theatre Co – Mary Poppins – Company – (Photo by Larry Marano)

The production began with a familiar skyline of chimneys littering the horizon as far as the eye can see. Bert (Adam Biner) entered to sing the refrain “chim-chimney, chim-chimney, chim-chim-charee” as he swept the stage. He foreshadows the change that is to come from through the duration of the play, noting that the winds are changing; Mary floats away and down and up with her magic umbrella and the changes in the wind.

When Mary (Melissa Whitworth) appears to take care of the Banks children, they embark on a magical journey with her to discover what it means to be good people and good, rule-following children. The costumes really caught my eye in this performance as being of an authentic aesthetic to the original source material. The vibe and mood of the musical can be culminated in a stellar performance of the entire ensemble with their rendition of “Jolly Holiday.”

Slow Burn Theatre Co – Mary Poppins – Melissa Whitworth – (photo by Larry Marano)

Besides two absolutely incredible performances from Whitworth and Biner, the music of this show brought me a nostalgia I simply didn’t know I had. I thought of my mother as I heard the words “spoonful of sugar” and “supercalifragilisticexpialidocious.” I could hear the floorboards of my house creak alongside the tap shoes slapping across the stage. This is what I meant by a little extra magic found me on opening night.

Tickets are still available for “Mary Poppins” at the Broward Center. Get your tickets here!

You may also like

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *