Dec 04

Sharing the Joyful Word: BLACK NATIVITY


Banner image borrowed from

Langston Hughes’ Black Nativity Dec. 2, 2015
Presented by Emerson College and National Center of Afro-American Artists
Book by Langston Hughes
Music & Lyrics chosen by Langston Hughes
Based on text from the Gospel of St. Luke
Executive Producer and Director: Voncille Ross
Assistant to the Director for Music: Stephen Hunter, Sr.
Choral Director for Children: Marilyn Andry
Choral Director for Adults: Milton L. Wright
Ballet Mistress: Desiree Springer

Dec. 4 – 20, 2015
ASL interpreted performances: Dec. 4, 6, 12, 13, 19, & 20, 2015
The Paramount Theater
Boston, MA
Paramount Theater on Facebook
Black Nativity Boston on Facebook

Review by Kitty Drexel

Performances are open to the public beginning on Friday, Dec. 4. I was invited to a dress rehearsal. This review will be based on the wonderful performance the NCAAA so graciously allowed me to attend on Dec. 2, 2015.

(Boston, MA) Jesus was a Jewish man from Israel. Israel shares a border with Egypt which is in Africa. His birthplace, Bethlehem, is approximately six miles from Jerusalem. It takes about five hours to get to Be’er Sheva from Bethlehem if you catch the right bus (thank you Googlemaps). From there, you could get within the borders of Africa if you really wanted to but the journey would be pointlessly rough. I mention this to prove a point: given the physical location of Nazareth, Bethlehem and Jerusalem on a map, it is highly unlikely that Jesus was the blonde haired, blue eyed, white man that Christians enjoy depicting today. You’d have to travel on foot through Lebanon, then Syria and finally Turkey, or voyage across the Mediterranean Sea to Greece or Italy before hitting any majority of white people… And that’s in 7-2 BCE. Good luck finding an agent willing to sell you travel insurance. Continue reading

Mar 01

Astonishing, Acrobatic Adaptation of “Metamorphosis”

Gisli Orn Gardarsson Photo Credit: Eddi

Gisli Orn Gardarsson
Photo Credit: Eddi

Presented by ArtsEmerson with Vesturport Theatre and Lyric Hammersmith Theatre

Based on the novella by Franz Kafka
Adapted and directed by Gisli Örn Gardarsson and David Farr
Featuring Music by Nick Cave and Warren Ellis

The Paramount Center Mainstage
559 Washington St.
Boston, MA
ArtsEmerson Facebook Page

Review by Gillian Daniels

This production of Metamorphosis is imbued with a frantic energy. This is partially due to Gísli Örn Gardarsson, one of the directors and the main character of this adaptation of Franz Kafka’s novel. Utilizing acrobatic skill and a set with plenty of footholds, Gardarsson plays Gregor Samsa.

Gregor’s family suffers after his transformation into a giant insect. In horror, they watch him crawl across the stage, aping a monster even though his human soul remains intact. Combining dark humor and a set split beautifully into two stages, this version of Metamorphosis is probably one of the most visually entrancing plays in Boston right now. Continue reading

Feb 01


Photo Credit: ArtsEmerson

Photo Credit: ArtsEmerson

Written by Carlo Goldoni
Adapted by Constance Congdon
Further adapted by Steven Epp and Christopher Bayes
From a Translation by Christina Sibul
Directed by Christopher Bayes

presented by Yale Repertory Theatre with ArtsEmerson

The Paramount Theater
Boston, MA
January 29th – February 10th, 2013
ArtsEmerson Facebook Page

Review by Craig Idlebrook

In the 18th century, playwrights had to walk a fine line if they were going to earn their bread, as their plays had to appeal simultaneously to both the washed and unwashed.  A play had to allow both illiterate farmers and literate aristocracy to connect with the story and side with the protagonists.  A playwright needed to find a common denominator in a story and then layer it with tidbits that resonated with segments of the audience. Continue reading