Tony nominated musical serves up bittersweet mixture of laughter and tears

Presented by David Mirvish
Based on the film by Adrienne Shelly|
Book by Jessie Nelson
Music & lyrics by Sara Bareilles

Melody A Betts, Christine Dwyer and Ephie Aardema in the National Touring Production of WAITRESS - Photo Credit Daniel Lippitt.

Baking can be messy, much like life, as is beautifully illustrated in the musical Waitress, a Tony Award-nominated show with music and and lyrics by Sara Bareilles, book by screenwriter Jessie Nelson (I Am Sam) and direction by Tony Award winner Diane Paulus (Pippin, Finding Neverland), now playing at the Ed Mirvish Theatre. 

The story follows Jenna (Christine Dwyer), a waitress and talented pie maker who dreams of leaving her small town and an abusive marriage to pursue a better life for herself and the "bun" cooking in her oven. With the support of her friends and fellow servers—the sassy Becky (Melody A. Betts) and geeky Dawn (Ephie Aardema)—at Joe's Pie Diner, Jenna plots to escape the clutches of her controlling husband Earl (Jeremy Woodard) by entering a baking contest in a nearby county which offers a $25,000 grand prize. At the same time, an unexpected encounter with someone new gives Jenna a taste of true happiness. Meanwhile Dawn and Becky both find themselves indulging in romantic delights of their own. 

This trio of strong female leads carries the show supported by fine supporting male performances in Cal (Ryan G. Dunkin) the gruff cook/manager, Dawn's goofy love interest Ogie (Jeremy Morse), restaurant owner Joe (Richard Kline) and the charming Doctor Pomatter (Steven Good). Stand out numbers include "Opening Up," "Club Knocked Up," "A Soft Place to Land," "Bad Idea," and "Everything Changes." 

At first glance Waitress might appear to be sugary fluff (there are a few overly sweet moments to be sure), but beneath the surface it is a deep dish (insert more pie puns here) exploring real problems and painful truths. Of course, similar to Jenna's "The Key (Lime) To Happiness Pie," this musical folds everything into an appealing package that will have you craving more right up until the last bite. Don't miss the baked goods for sale in the lobby!

Waitress is on stage until August 18, 2019 at the Ed Mirvish Theatre. Visit mirvish.com for more information and to buy tickets. 

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