Jul 20

Governor Charlie Baker Slashes FY17 Massachusetts Cultural Council Budget

Despite recent promises to the Massachusetts arts community, Gov. Charlie Baker has issued a budget veto that would decimate funding for the arts, humanities, and sciences again. You can contact him HERE to express your anger and disappointment.

The following links detail his hypocrisy:
Mass Cultural Council: http://www.massculturalcouncil.org/news/Governor_Veto_FY17.asp and http://www.massculturalcouncil.org/news/advocacy.asp (more MCC articles and releases)
Mass Creative: https://www.votervoice.net/MAARTS/campaigns/53655/respond

The good news is that  State Senator Adam Hinds of Pittsfield and Representative Cory Atkins of Concord have our backs. You can thank Senator Hinds HERE, and Representative Atkins HERE.

Jul 17

“Waiting for Waiting for Godot”

Photo by Tim Gurczak; costumes and puppy by Chelsea Kerl; the corgi isn’t part of it but she should be.

Presented by Hub Theatre Company of Boston
Written by Dave Hanson
Directed by Paula Plum

July 14 – 29, 2017
Club Cafe
209 Columbus Ave
Boston, MA
Hub on Facebook

Review by Kitty Drexel

Trigger warnings: bathroom use without washing hands

(Boston, MAWaiting for Waiting for Godot (WfWfG) is Beckett fanfiction through the lense of a Durang play. It’s confusing, absurd, and ultimately very funny. Hub Theatre Co of Boston does a fine job with Dave Hanson’s script. Continue reading

Jun 26

Give Me What I Deserve ‘Cause It’s My Right: FIDELIO

Photo credit: www.MattConti.com; impatient for reform, the prisoner ensemble takes some sun.

Presented by NEMPAC Opera Project
Opera by Ludwig van Beethoven
Libretto by Joseph von Sonnleithner
Artistic and stage direction by Rebecca Miller
Music direction and conducting by Dr. Tiffany Chang

June 22-25, 2017
Faneuil Hall
The Great Hall
Boston, MA
NEMPAC on Facebook

Sung in German with supertitles, dialogue in German for performer acting and audience comprehension compatibility.

Review by Kitty Drexel

(Boston, MA) Beethoven nails the human condition with his only opera. Fidelio is about the lengths we go to for those we love. Yet, Beethoven reminds us, it is unwise to underestimate the insecurities of the vengeful. NEMPAC’s production was a challenging joy. Continue reading

Jun 21

Heaven Has Thin Walls: “Los Meadows”

Robert Cope and Gale Argentine in Boston Public Works’ production. (Courtesy Paul Fox/Boston Public Works)

Presented by Boston Public Works Theater Company
Written by Laura Neubauer
Directed by Olivia D’Ambrosio

June 16 – July 1, 2017
Blackbox, South End / BCA Plaza Theatres
Boston, MA
BPWT on Facebook

Review by Kitty Drexel

Trigger warning for drug use, and sharp, loud noises.

(Boston, MA) Some adults who identify as homeless choose to be there. This doesn’t account for all of them, merely some of the population. These people who do choose to live on the streets, or off the grid are still people. They deserve compassion, and respect. Boston forgets that. People forget that. Los Meadows helps us remember our shared humanity. Continue reading

Jun 15

Don’t Choke on Your Spotted Dick: “Penny Penniworth: A Story of Great Good Fortune”


Presented by Titanic Theatre Company
Written by Chris Weikel
Directed by Sarah Gazdowicz

June 8 – 25, 2017
Central Square Theater Studio
450 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, Massachusetts 02139
Titanic on Facebook

Review by Kitty Drexel

(Cambridge, MATitanic Theatre Company’s Penny Penniworth: A Story of Great Good Fortune can be described as a summer panto minus the music, but plus a heaping spoonful of innuendo. It’s a swift, good time for adults who love classic literature (so long as they can take a joke), and refreshing summer theatre.    Continue reading

Jun 11

Geeks Read Books: “Lazarus” & “Oslo”

Reviews by Kitty Drexel

Copies are available on the TCG website, and everywhere that dramatic literature is sold. Or, you could try your local library.  Continue reading

Jun 10

Reinforced with Lug Nuts: SORDID LIVES (Portland, OR)

Nikolas Hoback as Ty, Signe Larsen as Latrelle, Landy Hite as Sissy, Jennifer Lanier as Lavonda and Amanda Richards as Bitsy; Image from the OUTwright Theatre Festival Facebook page.

Presented by Fuse Theatre Ensemble and Funhouse Lounge
Part of the 2017 OUTwright Theatre Festival
Written by Del Shores
Directed and designed by Rusty Tennant

May 19 – June 11, 2017
Funhouse Lounge
Portland, Oregon
Fuse Theatre on Facebook

Review by Kitty Drexel

A very special thank you to Fuse Theatre and Funhouse Lounge for allowing me to review their excellent production!

(Portland, OR)  Our existence is our resistance. One basic way we as minority community members can fight back against the current bullshit political crisis is by refusing to be silent or ignored. Theatre makers, we can make as much noisy, politically incorrect and socially unacceptable art. As the TCG 2017 Conference asked how we go about celebrating equity, diversity and inclusivity, I gathered by people. We ran across the bridge to Fuse Theatre’s production of Sordid Lives.

Continue reading

Jun 02

An Introvert’s Nightmare: RIPCORD

© Photo: T. Charles Erickson

Presented by Huntington Theatre Co.
By David Lindsay-Abaire
Directed by Jessica Stone
Original music by Mark Bennett
Choreography by Misha Shields

May 26 – June 25, 2017
South End
Calderwood Pavilion of the Arts
Boston, MA
Huntington on Facebook

Review by Kitty Drexel

(Boston, MATimes are not good right now in America. It’s hard being a freedom loving, feminist, liberal during a reign of political terror. Thank goodness there’s escapist theatre that warms the heart and only lightly pings the brain. Ripcord at the Huntington Theatre is just such a show. It isn’t high art. It isn’t activist art. It is a reminder that none of us are free until we’re all free. Continue reading

May 26

Theatre On Fire Presents: THE CABINET OF CURIOSITIES

THE CABINET OF CURIOSITIES is a genre-defying festival of theatre, movement, music, puppetry and more, united under one theme: take a risk.

Experience one last weekend of chaotic and dangerous, new and re-imagined work where we’ve challenged artists to present work that “scares” them. Featuring one-act and full-length pieces from Imaginary Beasts, Anthem Theatre, Sleeping Weazel, The American Family Happily Institute, Heart & Dagger Productions, Alley Cat Theater, Exiled Theatre, Mass. Theater Experiment, Ingrid Oslund, Fool’s Journey, Travis Amiel & Riley Fox Hillyer, Laura Detwiler, Daniel Morris, and Libby Schap & Caitlin Brzezinski.

Purchase tickets HERE.
Staged readings in the Cabinet Workshop Series are free and open to the public.
When ordering tickets for the readings, use the code FREE.
442 Bunker Hill Street
Charlestown, MA 02129
TOF on Facebook
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Friday, May 26
A trio of performances starting at 8:00pm​
Sleeping Weazel: Nocturne and Nina
Libby Schap and Caitlin Brzezinksi: Flying Lessons
Fool’s Journey: Singing Bones

Pianist and composer Kirsten Volness will play Nocturne, her electroacoustic piece inspired by Madison Cawein’s poem of the same title, and Nina, a three-song cycle tribute to jazz great Nina Simone composed by Judah Adashi.
Flying Lessons is told through shadow puppetry using moving screens and found object puppetry to examine three stories exploring identity and female relationships, inspired by the artwork of Audrey Niffenegger.
Singing Bones is an experimental, devised performance which focuses on direct physical engagement with traditional songs that have personal and/or ancestral significance to the performers.

Saturday, May 27
Mass. Theater Experiment: The Country Wife – 2:00pm
A workshop performance of a modern, sexy adaptation of William Wycherley’s The Country Wife. The smash hit of 1675 London was created in a period of artistic tolerance , but was later considered too immoral to perform. This imaginative, energetic, and spirited ensemble gives the Wife a trim and shapely makeover and adds a few curves of their own; part of the Cabinet Workshop Series.

Daniel Morris: I Am My Own Wife – 5:00pm
The fascinating tale of Charlotte von Mahlsdorf, a real-life German transvestite who managed to survive both the Nazi onslaught and the repressive East German Communist regime. Actor Gabe Graetz takes on more than 30 characters, staged up close and personal in CWT’s upstairs second stage.

A trio of performances starting at 8:00pm​
Sleeping Weazel: Nocturne and Nina
Libby Schap and Caitlin Brzezinksi: Flying Lessons
Fool’s Journey: Singing Bones

Pianist and composer Kirsten Volness will play Nocturne, her electroacoustic piece inspired by Madison Cawein’s poem of the same title, and Nina, a three-song cycle tribute to jazz great Nina Simone composed by Judah Adashi.
Flying Lessons is told through shadow puppetry using moving screens and found object puppetry to examine three stories exploring identity and female relationships, inspired by the artwork of Audrey Niffenegger.
Singing Bones is an experimental, devised performance which focuses on direct physical engagement with traditional songs that have personal and/or ancestral significance to the performers.

May 19

Poverty is Not an Indication of Criminality: “Jesus Hopped the A Train”

Photo credit: Alex Aroyan — with Danny Mourino, Dawn Davis, Harry Garo and Daniel Boudreau.

Presented by Praxis Stage
By Stephen Adly Guirgis
Directed by Dayenne C. Byron Walters & Daniel Boudreau

May 4 – 21, 2017
Dorchester Art Project
Dorchester, MA (across from the Field’s Corner T stop)
DAP on Facebook

Review by Kitty Drexel

(Dorchester, MA) The law isn’t interested in justice. It’s purpose is to execute “due process” as cheaply and swiftly as possible. It is historically, contemporarily, and immediately evident that the law performs based on the golden rule: he with the most gold (and the whitest skin) rules. Poverty means that an innocent man can spend the rest of his life in prison for a crime he didn’t commit. People of color get fucked by the legal system regularly. Praxis Stage’s Jesus Hopped the A Train isn’t fiction. It’s non-fiction utilizing fiction to blast unfortunate truths. Continue reading