FROZEN, THE MUSICAL: The cold never bothered me anyway!

Caroline Bowman as “Elsa” and Lauren Nicole Chapman as “Anna”. Photo by Matthew Murphy

Frozen: The Musical, based on the 2013 Disney film by the same name, comes to us from author and playwright Jennifer Lee, with direction from Michael Grandage, and music and lyrics by Kristen Anderson-Lopez and Robert Lopez.


Frozen: The Musical features the songs you know and love from the original Oscar-winning film, including ‘Let It Go’ by Idina Menzel, along with some extras. If you’re thinking this is solely a kiddie production, think again! Disney is (and has always been) for kids of all ages! There’s something for everyone in this musical, even a bit of burlesque. 

The story centers on the estranged relationship between two sisters, Princess Elsa of Arendelle, who fashions a frosty climate wherever she goes, and her high-spirited younger sister, Princess Anna, who’s more of a warm kind of gal (think Snow Miser and Heat Miser, except the love is there). While the family is aware of Elsa’s frosty magic, it’s kept secret from the people of Arendelle.

One night, Elsa and Anna build a magical snowman named Olaf, in Elsa’s room. After Elsa accidentally injures Anna with her icy magic, she fears she may one day fatally injure someone and therefore seeks to do away with her magical powers. However, her magical powers are part of her and cannot be removed. She therefore shuts out Anna in order to keep her safe. The sisters’ parents, King Agnarr (Kyle Lamar Mitchell) and Queen Iduna (Katie Mariko Murray), seek the help of the colony of Hidden Folk, led by Grand Pabbie, who heals Anna and removes her memories of Elsa’s magic. The king isolates the sisters within the castle walls while the monarchs seek answers across the sea, alas, never to return. And once Elsa becomes queen, things really freeze up! 

Frozen stars Caroline Bowman as “Elsa” and Lauren Nicole Chapman as “Anna,” the sisters at the heart of the tempestuous musical. Anna is described within the play as “a tornado with pigtails,” which Chapman executes perfectly. Elsa’s energy is just as magnetic, coupled with Bowman’s powerful yet angelic voice that gives Menzel a run for her money.

Joining them opening night were principal cast members Jeremy Davis as “Olaf,” Dominic Dorsett as “Kristoff,” Preston Perez as “Hans,” Evan Duff as “Weselton,” Collin Baja as “Sven,” Annie Piper Braverman as “Young Anna,” and Erin Choi as “Young Elsa.” The latter two opened the production, delivering back-to-back comical lines, much to the audience’s delight. In fact, many comical moments exist throughout the production thanks to the unity among the cast. Such fun!

Kudos to Davis for his puppeteering skills with beloved Olaf, the talking snowman befriending the sisters who created him. No doubt he got direction from physical movement coordinator Lorenzo Pisoni.       (Fun fact: Davis is touring with his wife in this production. Kristen Smith Davis is part of the ensemble.)

Equally impressive, and likely much more physically taxing, is Sven, the expressive reindeer portrayed by Baja. Judging by the fact that he didn’t remove his headpiece at curtain call, you can only imagine Baja was sewn into this suit, having walked on all fours throughout the production.

Nothing here is random, which makes all the effects nothing shy of stunning. Lighting effects follow the sound to create a rippling freezing effect around the set. It’s so breathtaking it gives you the chills! As the music rises, the light bursts and sparkling snow erupts, which rapidly sprawls across the set, instantly creating a gorgeous glistening winter wonderland.

The sets are simply gorgeous. There’s a Nordic Viking feel to Frozen‘s spellbinding set design with maybe a little Germanic influence. This is evidenced in the captivating Maypole dance, which has its roots in medieval Germany’s Paganism. Everything is decorated this way including the fabrics, walls and even Elsa’s ice magic. Giant rocks (think Easter Island) in the Enchanted Forest are part of the earth element (think Earth Giants to aficionados of Frozen II). It’s magical! 

Frozen: The Musical is one you don’t want to miss! Even the choreography is spectacular. Seldom do you see a stage with so many dancers all perfectly in step while creating movement that astounds. There’s an amazing cohesion among the creative team here, including: music director Faith Seetoo, sound designer Peter Hylenski, video designer Finn Ross, special effects designer Jeremy Chernick, lighting designer Nathasha Katz, scenic and costume designer Christopher Oram, choreographer Rob Ashford, and so many others who make this musical a work of magic.

During the curtain call, Bowman gave a shout out to all women in honor of International Women’s Day, resulting in a cacophonous cheer. There is so much to celebrate here! “Let it go! Let it go! Can’t hold it back anymore!”

PPAC presents Frozen through March 17. Show runs about two hours fifteen minutes, including a 20-minute intermission. For more info, visit or call 421-ARTS.