top of page

Reviews Pour In For "PUMP BOYS & DINETTES" After Opening Weekend at Porchlight Music Theatre

See what critics have to say about taking a trip down Highway 57...


Photos | Cholette

"When the cast of 'Pump Boys & Dinettes' bursts onto the stage with a blast of warm energy against the quickly cooling Chicago weather, it’s clear that there are few better ways to spend 90 minutes than in the storytelling arms of the four gas station-running pump boys and the two waitresses of a North Carolina diner."

- Chicago Tribune, Jerald Pierce

“Driven by hugely talented cast, ‘Pump Boys & Dinettes’ serves up a good ol’ time”[...]“As the six-member ensemble sings about fishing, pie, road trips, Walmart and romance, it’s as clear as a newly shined Winnebago windshield that music director Robert Reddrick knows his business.”

- Chicago Sun Times, Catey Sullivan

(L to R, Melanie Loren, Ricky Harris, & Shantel Cribbs)

“Porchlight's ensemble brings the high energy and humor that we've all been missing from live musical theater”[...]“a reminder that Porchlight is a wonderful musical theater house right here in downtown Chicago, and this production delivers on the theatrical joy that I've missed for so long.”

- BroadwayWorld, Rachel Weinberg

“Brooks’ vision and direction help it fit seamlessly into today’s world, in which its blend of bouncy, joyful songs and occasional slower character pieces feels right at home. Mostly, however, it is designed to get us tapping our toes and clapping our hands as we enjoy this buoyant, jubilant slice of life that puts COVID, politics, and the economy completely out of our minds for an hour and a half. And that is welcome indeed.”

- Chicago On Stage, Karen Topham

Photos | Cholette

“ Brooks’s wisdom and the love of theater bring energy and the fever of excitement, which is witnessed in this play, elevating the cast performance.”

- LetsPlay Chicago Now, Rick & Brenda McCain

“Under the mastery of both Director Daryl Brooks and Music Director Rob Reddrick, this stellar ensemble embrace their personas and serve up a hearty helping of tasty treats.”[...]“Traveling down to Highway 57 is a carefree pandemic road trip worth taking! PUMP BOYS & DINETTES is THE destination for a fun-loving, shoulder-shimmying, broad-smiling (underneath the mask-wearing) night out!”

- The Fourth Walsh, Katy Walsh

"Cast to perfection,"[...]"I found myself wanting a piece of sweet potato pie and a cup of Joe within minutes of the opening,"[...]"Billy Rude handles Jackson (and lead guitar) as if this part was written for him”

- Around The Town, Alan Bresloff

“Transcends into a joyous, slap-happy, tongue-in-cheek tune fest all its own and serves as a dynamic showcase for the multi-talented singers and actors required to pull it off. And the cast that director Daryl Brooks and music director Robert Reddrick have assembled is certainly up to the task.”

- PickInSix, Ed Tracey

Ian Paul Custer hits all the right notes as Jim,”[...]"Frederick Harris who almost steals the show as nerdy, honky-tonk keyboarding L.M. His performance of 'Serve Yourself' is, alone, worth the price of admission,"[...]"Both ladies [Shantel Cribbs & Melanie Loren] set the Double Cupp on fire with their sexy rendition of 'Tips,' 'Vacation,' and then shift gears with the nostalgic 'Sisters.' Besides being brilliant singers, these two actresses can also keep the rhythm going on a host of household items and then really dance up a storm.”

- Chicago Theatre Review, Colin Douglas

"PUMP BOYS & DINETTES" plays through Dec. 12 at The Ruth Page Center for The Arts, get your tickets today! Tickets Available Online


bottom of page