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Reviews of Mountain Days:
The John Muir Musical

  • Winner of the 2002 San Francisco Bay Area Critics Award for best original book and lyrics.
  • Named one of the top 10 outdoor dramas of 2002 by USA Today



San Francisco Chronicle:
"One Mountain of a musical…Grand!"

Jeff Hudson, Capitol Public Radio:
"One of the best new musicals I've seen in a while"

Oakland Tribune:
"Exciting and tuneful with a humorous and touching book and lyrics"

Pat Craig - Contra Costa Times:
"The theatrical event of the season! A stunning and captivating show with considerably more heat and intensity than you normally expect out of a musical"

Rossmoor News:
" grand and wonderful and exciting as a musical could possibly be!"

Talkin' Broadway by Richard Connema:
"Passionate, turbulent and memorable…. An excellent score full of romantic ballads and soul searing songs, and lyrics that fit perfectly with Bohmler's music. Craig Bohmler, who has written four musicals, including Enter the Guardsman and Gunmetal Blues, has provided an excellent score full of life and humor. The romantic ballads and soul searing songs are very well composed. The lyrics are by Tony nominated Mary Bracken Phillips (Metro), and they fit perfectly with Bohmler's music."
Full Review by Richard Connema (off-site link).

"Does a remarkable job translating Muir's visionary writing and political advocacy into, of all things, a pleasing historically informed musical with a strong book and great songs."

SF Gate review by Sam McManis (2001):
"It's a delightful, three-hour romp, a saga that dabbles in the maudlin but never gets crushed by it."

SF Gate review by Robert Hurwitt (2002):
"As an ambitious effort to portray Muir's life and create a cultural focus for the Martinez waterfront, the show has its points. As a musical, "Mountain" is a long trek over a pretentious molehill. [The 2002 performance of "Mountain Days" by Willows Theatre] is more impressive for what it attempts than achieves."
Full Review by Robert Hurwitt:. (August 5, 2002) (Off-site link)

Scott Parker, director of the Institute of Outdoor Drama at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill:
"It's a top-drawer production. The secret of the success of outdoor dramas is that they dramatize events that were significant in the life of a community or events in the life of a famous person who lived in the community. So people go to these outdoor dramas almost as if they were taking a pilgrimage, going to walk the hallowed ground, as it were. It's not like producing 'Hello, Dolly!' outdoors.
(The institute now works with theaters that produce 50 historical dramas, 65 Shakespearean festivals and 11 religious dramas. But they are clustered in the East, and just three historical dramas are staged in California.)

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