Meredith Wilson's The Music Man

at The Utah Shakespeare Festival

Directed by Jeremy Mann | Choreographed by Rhett Guter

”Rhett Guter’s choreography also helps this production seem new and exciting. Fused with more ballet than you usually see in The Music Man, the choreography ranges from romantic to athletic, with never a dull moment to behold. Moreover, the choreography contributes vitally the central messages of the play: the power of music to move people. As I saw the music and the excitement that Harold Hill brings to River City move the ensemble characters to dance, it became easier to watch how music was emotionally moving Marian, Mrs. Paroo, Mrs. Shinn, and the other characters. As for specific dance numbers, I was hugely impressed by “Marian the Librarian,” “Seventy-Six Trombones,” and the classic “Shipoopi.” I found all these songs undeniably enjoyable, mostly thanks to the visual spectacle that came from the dancers.”

— Utah Theatre Blogger’s Association

”Amid the hoopla during the famed “76 Trombones” song, you’re struck by the sight of a young boy (Bailey Duncan) looking in awe at Hill. You’re taken in by a brief, scene-stealing solo dance by the “teenage delinquent” (played by the commanding Rhett Guter, whose precise authority as a hoofer is matched by his imaginative choreography). During a busy dance routine in the library, you’re surprised by a book cart that momentarily metamorphoses into a gondola”

— Las Vegas Review-Journal

”Tcx he dancing in “Music Man” is very well choreographed and executed. It is a treat to see a musical with such well-done dance numbers.

Festival Executive Director R. Scott Phillips said, “Music Man is the best dancing musical we have ever done.”

This is largely due to fine choreography from Rhett Guter, who also plays the much-maligned Tommy Djilas who has a forbidden romance with the mayors daughter. Guter has delighted past audiences as Skum in the Greenshow and in productions such as “HMS Pinafore,” “Lend Me a Tenor the Musical,” “Cyrano De Bergerac,” and “The Diary of Anne Frank.”

Guter is a scene-stealer, and in this production he steals the show both with his charming, impish stage presence and his lively, well-staged choreography. Some cast members from the Greenshow join in the exciting dance numbers.”

— Iron County Today

Excellent Directing and Choreography by UTBA 2011

“Jeremy Mann’s direction and Rhett Guter’s choreography for the Utah Shakespeare Festival’s production of The Music Man still awes me, six months later. Mann’s direction pulled more emotion out of The Music Man than I ever thought possible. (There were even people crying at intermission!) And I adored Guter’s choreography, as I clearly wrote in my original review. Together, Mann and Guter have a production by which I’ll be judging all future versions of The Music Man that I see.”

— Russell Warne, UTBA staff