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I Love Lucy Live on Stage: A Trip to the Past

July 10, 2013


In America, we have a fascination with the past and with the idea of traveling back in time.

Thanks to Rick Sparks, the director of I Love Lucy Live on Stage, we can travel back to 1952 in the Desilu Studios. On Aug. 7, I Love Lucy Live on Stage starts its national tour here in Charlotte’s Knight Theater at  Levine Center for the Arts.

Sparks gives the audience a chance to see Lucy (Sirena Irwin), Ricky (Bill Mendieta), Fred (Kevin Remington) and Ethel (Joanna Daniels) live and in color – performing famous comedic acts that many TV viewers have come to know and love. They re-enact two of the shows – “Lucy Has Her Eyes Examined” and “The Benefit” – but bring new life to them by re-enacting the entire filming of the show, as well. So today’s audience not only receives a wave of nostalgia for the show itself, but a moment of wonder as they experience what it might have been like to be a part of the original studio audience.

There are scenes in Lucy and Ricky’s New YorkLUCY%20P03 apartment, as well as the Tropicana Nightclub. The Ricky Ricardo Orchestra also makes a live appearance with a seven-piece re-creation of the original musical group. In between scenes, Sparks even throws in short, live performances of 1950s commercials, such as “Brylcreem” and “Mr. Clean.” These all serve to excite and enchant, making the play into a real celebration of the era and the I Love Lucy show.


It’s the moments of vulnerability – seeing Lucille Ball portrayed as not just Lucy Ricardo, but as herself – that make the whole premise of the show most intriguing. As each character unfolds, the audience gets to see their comedic triumphs, their inevitable foibles, and most importantly, how each character reacts to these. This is the unique pull of the show – its insight into Lucille Ball, Desi Arnaz, Vivian Vance and William Frawley as the people behind the legend.

If you’re interested in I Love Lucy or in learning about the characters behind the legendary show, or if you just want to experience time travel in its most advanced form, get your tickets now for I Love Lucy Live on Stage. Held in Knight Theater at Levine Center for the Arts, Aug. 7-18, each performance is sure to be full of laughs. Click HERE to get your tickets now!

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