REVIEW: Peter Pan

No one will need a sprinkle of fairy dust to think happy thoughts after a chance to see “Peter Pan” at the Ordway. The enchanting show brings J.M. Barrie’s timeless tale to life in a refreshed modern-day storyline. Audience members journey to the magical world of Neverland, where Peter Pan, Wendy, Tinker Bell, Tiger Lily, and the Lost Boys embark on adventures.

Sixteen-year-old Nolan Almeida knocks out his role as Peter Pan with a blend of mischievousness and innocence. His charisma and charm embody the iconic character—what an amazing actor! Wendy (Hawa Kamara) and the Lost Boys add depth to the narrative with their endearing portrayals, while the villainous Captain Hook (Cody Garcia) steals the show with his theatrical flair and motley crew of pirates.

Magic is real as the elaborate sets transition between the Darling family’s nursery and the fantastical landscapes of Neverland. Theatrical effects go so far above merely taking flight, as you would expect in a Pan production. The digital mixed media special effects are some of the best we’ve ever seen on stage. I’m still wondering how they made “Tink” work! And the scene with Peter Pan’s shadow had even the most seasoned audience members looking at one another with delight and awe.

Peter Pan was a joyful experience that captured our hearts with its visually stunning production, exceptional cast, and enchanting musical score. The show is a must-see for audiences of all ages. Whether you’re a fan of the classic story or discovering it for the first time, this production brings the magic of Neverland to the stage in a way that is sure to leave you and your family “Hooked!”

Peter Pan is at the Ordway in St. Paul through December 31, 2023. Tickets start at $46.

Review by Tracy Whitney