• Band Visits ATCA

    From Sardi’s to Broadway

    By: Charles Giuliano - Nov 08th, 2017

    During last year's NY conference of American Theatre Critics Association (ATCA) there was a panel on the development of the musical, then in previews, of what went on to be the Tony winning musical Dear Evan Hansen. Predicting that lightning will stike twice the team for The Band's Visit discussed the transitions from film, to Off Broadway, and now a production at Broadway's Ethel Barrymore Theatre. The smart money is on running the table during the awards season.

  • Dolores Claiborne by Tobias Picker

    New York City Opera Hits a Home Run, Again

    By: Susan Hall - Oct 27th, 2017

    New York City Opera's production of Tobias Picker's latest opera, Dolores Claiborne, honors the composer in a riveting theatrical presentation. Oliver Sacks explored the musical brain in his Musicophilia. The connection between the two hemispheres of the brain is enlarged demonstrably in talented musicians. So too a section of the hippocampus. Picker, who began composing at four, was studied by Sacks. Whether or not his brain reflects musicality because he started playing and composing early, or because he was born with this ability, remains to be answered. What is clear in Dolores Claiborne, as produced by NYCO, is how great his talent for opera is.

  • Colonial Theatre in Pittsfield Update

    Shows Through April

    By: Charles Giuliano - Oct 26th, 2017

    Upcoming events at the Colonial include, The Airplane Family & Friends with Live Dead ‘69 (10/27), $10 Music Garage: Subtleties (11/9), Upright Citizens Brigade (UCB) Touring Company (11/11), $5 Comedy Garage: Rojo Perez (at the Garage in the Colonial Theatre lobby 11/16), Ain't Wastin' Time: A Berkshire Tribute to Gregg Allman with Rev Tor's Steal Your Peach Band & Friends (11/30) and A Christmas Carol (12/9 through 12/22).

  • 1966 Play by Prolific but Unknown Alice Childress

    Wedding Band: A Love/Hate Story in Black and White

    By: Nancy Bishop - Nov 07th, 2017

    Wedding Band: A Love/Hate Story in Black and White is a powerful drama of black-white relations in 1918 South Carolina, soulfully directed by Cecile Keenan at the Artistic Home. The 1966 play, written by Alice Childress, a prolific if little-known African-American playwright, has passion and relevance for a modern audience.

  • Venus in Fur Sizzles

    CV REP Theatre in Rancho Mirage, CA

    By: Jack Lyons - Nov 07th, 2017

    The on-stage chemistry between Angela Sauer and Patrick Zeller is literally palpable. Their performances fully engage the audience who become fascinated by the push and pull of playwrightDavid Ives’ characters. References to the origin of the title “Venus in Fur” also enliven the audiences’ fascination with the story.

  • ATCA Sondheim Panel

    Five Actors Discuss Their Iconic Roles

    By: Charles Giuliano - Nov 07th, 2017

    The New York conference of American Theatre Critics Association ended on Sunday morning with a Stephen Sondheim panel at the nightclub Don't Tell Mama. Moderated by the critic Rick Pender, the actors Len Cariou, Harvey Evans, Pamela Myers, Kurt Peterson and Teri Ralston recalled originating now iconic roles. On every level ATCA saved the best for last,

  • The Sound of Music on National Tour

    Rodgers and Hammerstein Musical Stops in South Florida

    By: Aaron Krause - Oct 11th, 2017

    A new production of The Sound of Music dusts off the cobwebs from classic musical .A vibrant company performs Rodgers and Hammerstein classic in national tour. Award-winning director Jack O'Brien's new production allows us to rediscover a classic.

  • The Crucible at Steppenwolf

    Miller's Witch Hunt All Too Relevant

    By: Nancy Bishop - Oct 12th, 2017

    Steppenwolf Theatre’s new production of Arthur Miller’s 1952 play, skillfully directed by Jonathan Berry, is a chilling allegory of the McCarthy era’s assault on freedom. Staged for the Steppenwolf for Young Adults series, the play pulls no punches in telling the story of guilt and accusation during the Salem witch trials.

  • The Home Place at Irish Repertory Theatre

    Brian Friel's Play Directed by Charlotte Moore

    By: Susan Hall - Oct 14th, 2017

    The Last Rose of Summer and Minstrel Boy were written by Irish poet and lyricist Thomas Moore and are at the heart of the Irish soul. Satisfying direction by Charlotte Moore, undoubtedly a descendant, brings the poetry and music home in Brian Friel's "The Home Place."

  • The Drowsy Chaperone in Boca Raton

    Send Up of 1920s Musicals in South Florida

    By: Aaron Krause - Oct 20th, 2017

    The Drowsy Chaperone offers good ole' escapist fare. Musical lovingly parodies shows from the Prohibition era. The Wick Theatre's production features high-octane, physical comedy and robust singing.

  • Gordon Getty Unearths Ghosts

    A Pair of Seasonal Operas

    By: Susan Hall - Oct 20th, 2017

    The Center for Contemporary Opera is presenting the premier of a pair of operas by Gordon Getty. One is based on Edgar Allan Poe’s The House of Usher. The other, on Oscar Wilde’s sympathetic take on a ghost who cannot die, poor guy.

  • Prince of Egypt World Premiere

    Music and Lyrics by Stephen Schwartz and Book by Philip LaZebnik

    By: Victor Cordell - Oct 21st, 2017

    This is a musical entertainment for the many, not a Sunday School lesson for the few.

  • Strange Ladies by Susan Sobeloff

    Central Works and plays at Berkeley City Club

    By: Victor Cordell - Oct 21st, 2017

    Strange Ladies greatest strength is its informativeness about the history of the movement, and additionally about the Occoquan Workhouse Prison, where public officials contrived to imprison and abuse some of the suffrage women.

  • In the Next Room, or The Vibrator Play

    By Chicago's Sarah Ruhl

    By: Nancy Bishop - Nov 08th, 2017

    It’s a woman’s play, about an era when women’s physical and emotional needs and desires were not only misunderstood, but completely ignored. Sarah Ruhl’s In the Next Room, or the Vibrator Play is a charming and titillating look at life in the bad old 19th century. In the playwright's home town it is currently on stage at Chicago's Timeline Theatre.

  • Shaw's Mrs. Warren’s Profession

    At Pasadena's A Noise Within

    By: Jack Lyons - Oct 22nd, 2017

    Pasadena’s A Noise Within theatre company, is staging a provocative and spirited comedy production of Shaw’s “Mrs. Warren’s Profession”, a witty play about the ‘world’s oldest profession’, or is it about something else that is masquerading for a more insidious subject matter discussion: the misogyny of men in a patriarchal society who harbor the fear of being exposed for their shortcomings.

  • A Tale of Two Cities in Pasadena

    Play Adapted by Mike Poulton.

    By: Jack Lyons - Oct 22nd, 2017

    “A Tale of Two Cities”, published in 1859, was one of the finest novels of its day and now, 200 years later it appears on the stage of Pasadena’s classic theatre company, A Noise Within, as a bold, new, dramatic production from the pen of journeyman writer and play adaptor Mike Poulton.

  • Tarzan in Ft. Lauderdale

    High-Flying Musical Adaptation by Slow Burn Theatre Co.

    By: Aaron Krause - Oct 23rd, 2017

    Lighting-heavy production of Tarzan still benefits from 'less-is-more' approach. South Florida theater company show marked by strong acting, singing, acrobatics . Musical's themes are illuminated by the director.

  • Berkshire Theatre Awards 2017

    Founded in Memory of the Critic Larry Murray

    By: Charles Giuliano - Nov 06th, 2017

    In his final months theatre critic, Larry Murray, founded Berkshire Theatre Critics Association. In its first annual presenttation of awards "The Berkies" he rallied to enjoy the occasion and to present the first award in his name, for service to the community. We were packed into Mr. Finn's Cabaret last year but last night the event occured before a capacity, attentive audience in the Mark St. Germain Stage of the Pittsfield company. Many more regional companies were nominated and participated in the awards evening. Next year three more companies will be eligible.

  • Our Town Revised in Miami Beach

    World Premiere of a Reborn Classic

    By: Aaron Krause - Oct 28th, 2017

    A new staging of Our Town emphasizes Miami's diversity. A mult-cultural, multi-racial cast speaks English, Spanish and Creole in new, different but faithful version of Thornton Wilder's classic Our Town. Talented cast ensures classic Wilder play remains touching, yet unsentimental

  • Comedies at Polonsky Shakespeare Center

    Marcello Magni and Joe Houben Teach Us Laughter

    By: Susan Hall - Oct 30th, 2017

    Marcel is being examined and interviewed by a clown evaluator (Houben) to see if he is able to continue his career. Juggling hats, the manipulation of hands and arms, are added to basic, biking, batting, swinging, and swimming. Marcel demonstrates that, if he is no fit as a fiddle, he is facile with his limbs and trunk. No question that he can make us laugh, and cry too.

  • National Chorale Celebrates 50th

    Everett McCorvey a Brilliant Leader

    By: Susan Hall - Nov 04th, 2017

    To listen to Leonard Bernstein's Chichester Psalms and then the raunchy, life-affirming Carmina Burana is heaven. Or hell, if you prefer it. Sometimes Carl Orff, the composer of Carmina Burana does both and it is these moments, like love joined in a soprano's stratasphere, that give particular pleasure.

  • Freight with J. Alphonse Nicholson

    New Federal and Castillo Theatres Triumphant Team Up

    By: Susan Hall - Nov 11th, 2017

    Howard L. Craft has crafted a superb play in Freight: The Five Incarnations of Abel Green. What was it like to be a young black man in America throughout the 20th century and on into our own? Minstrel, preacher, panther, sub-prime mortgage salesman, Abel Green has tried them all. J. Alphonse Nicholson makes his efforts palpably moving.

  • The Band's Visit on Broadway

    Popular Musical at the Ethel Barrymore

    By: Aaron Krause - Nov 11th, 2017

    The Band's Visit restores faith in the goodness of humanity. The new musical adaptation features tender, heartfelt songs. Show is well acted and sung by a talented cast

  • ATCA at Sardi’s

    Lunch with Broadway Stars

    By: Charles Giuliano - Nov 10th, 2017

    A highlight of the American Theatre Critics Association’s New York conference is a now traditional lunch at Sardi’s with stars of current Broadway shows. Cast members of seven shows were represented.

  • Priscilla Queen of the Desert, (the musical).

    Smashing at Palm Canyon Theatre

    By: Jack Lyons - Nov 10th, 2017

    Musicals are the specialty of the Palm Canyon Theatre (PCT) where they are sensationally produced and performed. PCT is now in its twenty-first year of providing quality entertainment to the Coachella Valley, presenting thirteen productions a year that include comedies, dramas, and special events as well as their signature musicals.

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