(Watertown) It is deeply refreshing to see women amidst the revels of their maturity being embraced by playwrights as the medium for their works. There aren’t enough chewy roles for women past the age of ingenue naivete that embrace life beyond mother or spinsterhood. As an actress and feminist critic, it was a pleasure to watch On the Verge. Playwright Eric Overmyer has given Boston and its actors a gift and it is my hope that the community embraces it.
On the Verge is about three intrepid female explorers in search of adventure in Terra Incognita. While collecting data, photos and samples, our heroines spelunk and hack their way to new territory in space and time. The characters are based on actual accounts of Victorian-era lady explorers who defied the conventions of the time. They sought independence in the wilds beyond Westernized civilization and found it. Continue reading →
(Beverly) If a career coach ever did an aptitude test on a young Paula Poundstone and didn’t find she was cut out to be a comedian, that coach was a loser. Angular, socially awkward, and blessed and cursed with OCD that causes her to let loose a constant stream of sarcastic chatter, Poundstone found her calling on the comedy stage. She owned the North Shore Music Theatre for one night this past April and left the crowd feeling happy and confused. Continue reading →
(Stoneham) There is nowhere to hide with a new musical. Unlike a fresh drama, where an audience can be tricked into going along if there’s enough shouting, as soon as an actor opens her mouth to start singing, the audience can tell whether the song enhances or detracts from the plot, usually with disastrous results. Continue reading →
(Watertown, MA)The Third Story is Charles Busch’s devotional to Mothers and their Mama’s Boys everywhere. Screenwriter Peg lures her son Drew back into the business via a narrative of Gangster Noir, B-movie Sci-Fi, Russian fairytale and the kind of motherly affection psychologists use to warm their couches. Peg’s excuse is McCarthyism but her vehicle is a journey through the psyche of a co-dependent man emotionally unprepared to leave the nest. Continue reading →
(Winchester, MA) When I watch an Olympic gymnast fly on the balance beam or the uneven bars, I
know I am watching genius, not because I know the difference between a punch- front summersault and a double pike, but because they make it look easy, effortless. The same can be said of playwright Robert Harling, the author of Steel Magnolias. Continue reading →
(Chelsea, MA) In a twist on Shakespeare in the Park, the Apollinaire Theatre Company has chosen to perform a free production of Tom Stoppard’s Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead during the most gorgeous time of year. Each act is in a different location through out Mary O’Malley Park with the audience following the actors during intermission. The sunset, view of the river, docks, mural, and brilliant staging make a surprisingly fitting backdrop for Stoppard’s clever script. Continue reading →
They’re ba-ack…Alice, John, and Michelle return to thwart the troublesome MBTA. On June 8th, T: An MBTA Musical, the surprising smash hit of last summer, makes stops at Club Oberon. Where do ideas for musicals come from? Melissa Carubia, the show’s composer, takes us on the underground journey.
(Arlington, MA) We’ve all been there (well, at least anyone 25 or older). Years pass; we have successes and failures. And then it hits us–where did all those years go? Remember the wide-eyed 18 year old who thought he/she had everything figured out? Monsters! A Midlife Musical looks at what happens when all of the insecurities, all of the doubts, and all of the concessions that have been made in Samantha’s life confront her on her 40th birthday. Continue reading →
(Watertown, MA) Art is…well, about art–the styles, philosophies, the impact on the individual. When a person creates a work of art, using quality tools always helps in creating a quality piece (although that’s not to say that there aren’t some interesting works of art made from found objects). Antonio Ocampo-Guzman starts with some of the finest: a brilliant script and a trio of Boston talent. Without any deeper analysis, those are two reasons to see the show. The problem with art, as the play postulates, is that art is subjective and will not necessarily be seen the same through the same lens by each person. Continue reading →
(Manchester, NH) They usually don’t hand out acting awards for comedies, and that is a crying shame. Is it really harder for an actor to emote than pratfall down the stairs a dozen times a show? Is biting dialogue really harder to memorize than fifty quick entrances and exits? A farce may be light on character development, but it is a full-court press of physicality and split-second acting.