Presented by The Umbrella Stage Company Music by Harry Warren Lyrics by Al Dubin Book by Michael Stewart & Mark Bramble Based on the novel by Bradford Ropes Directed by Brian Boruta Music direction by James Murphy Musical restaging and new choreography by Lara Finn Banister
(Concord, MA) 42nd Street is a show-within-a-show jukebox musical serving as a thinly veiled excuse to pair tap dance with 1930’s Broadway hits. The 1933 Depression-era movie had choreography by Busby Berkeley and was nominated for an Academy Award. The movie (and eventually the musical) has deeply impacted musical theatre. Bullets Over Broadway, Kiss Me Kate and other backstage musicals have all been influenced by 42nd Street’s incarnations. It’s a classic but carries with it the problems of its time. Continue reading →
Image via https://www.lyricstage.com/spiro-veloudos-retirement/
BOSTON – Theatre director Spiro Veloudos announced that he will retire as the Producing Artistic Director of the Lyric Stage Company of Boston in December 2019, said a press release dated October 3.
“Ever since I started in this role in 1998, I promised to make the Lyric Stage ever more vibrant and to continually push my limits, producing shows that would challenge, entertain, and inspire our audiences.
“When I concluded my Sondheim Initiative with the production of Pacific Overtures this past spring, I took the summer off to contemplate what might be next, and I realized that it is time for me to focus solely on my work as a director and to let others manage the daily operations of the theatre and to guide it into the future.
“We need to make books cool again. If you go home with somebody and they don’t have books, don’t fuck them.”
Critique by Kitty Drexel
(Boston, MA) The pop culture obsessions of today are the classics of tomorrow: 50 Shades of Greyis Twilight fanfiction; the Twilight Saga is influenced by Wuthering Heights; Wuthering Heights was controversial in its day for its critical examination of religious hypocrisy, and class inequality within the gothic fiction genre. If the cultural narrative in response to a book shows us who we are as a society, then The Book Club Play at Boston Playwrights’ Theatre shows us that book snobs are insecure secret-hiders. Continue reading →
Playwright Ginger Lazarus; photo via www.gingerlazarus.com.
(Cambridge, MA) Playwright Ginger Lazarus said the journey to write her drama “The Akhmatova Journals” began in 1993 while visiting St. Petersburg, Russia.
Lazarus was completing a semester abroad in Moscow through the O’Neill Center’s National Theater Institute when fellow students invited her to visit the Anna Akhmatova Museum at the Fountain House with them. She said during a phone interview in late July that she planned on meeting her classmates there that afternoon but a sudden, touristy apathy convinced her to spend the afternoon sipping espresso in a cafe instead.
“I still kick myself for not going,” Lazarus said.
Lazarus’s play “The Akhmatova Journals” is scheduled for a dramatic play reading as part of the That’s What She Said program held by the Nora Theatre Company at Central Square Theater in Cambridge, MA. Continue reading →
Amanda J Collins and Robert Najarian; photo by Corinne Elicone.
Presented by Mount Auburn Cemetery By Patrick Gabridge, Mount Auburn Cemetary Artist-in-Residence Directed by Courtney O’Connor Music in All the Broken Pieces written, performed and recorded by Arshan Gailus
CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – The America Plays is a pleasant introduction to a select few of the curious residents interred at Mount Auburn Cemetery through theatre. These short plays in place preserve the lives of eight artists, politicians, and scientists while asking their audience to hike the cemetery grounds. It’s a charming way to meet some New England spirits and watch the grounds transition to their fall colors. Continue reading →
Oppression isn’t a contest. Virginia is mourning the 400th anniversary of slavery in the US. June 28 marked the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall riots. The ADA wasn’t made law until 1990. The only people who win when marginalized communities fight are the rich, white people who make money from our oppression. No one is free until we are all free. Freedom must be intersectional. Continue reading →
Trigger warning: sexual abuse of a minor, gas lighting, female objectification
(Cambridge, MA) Six is catchy like Hamilton. They have similar harmonic elements; both borrow heavily from popular music formats. Unlike Hamilton, Six lends its female characters depth beyond the deeds of a man. The women of six will be remembered for more than a shared husband. They’ll be remembered for living and their shared husband. Continue reading →
Presented by Acropolis Stage Company By David Gow Directed by Evan Turissini Law practice consultation by Will Korman Judaism & culture consultation by Becky Price
August 23 – September 1, 2019 The Rockwell 255 Elm Street Somerville, MA 02144 Acropolis Stage on Facebook
Critique by Kitty Drexel
This critique contains minor spoilers.
Trigger warning: depictions of violence, domestic terrorism, racism, hate speech, panic attacks, white fragility
(Somerville, MA) Cherry Docs may be the most relevant-to-our-times production this theatre season. Other area-productions will claim to be relevant (storytelling often is) but they won’t attack the western world’s ongoing white, male, hetero, cis problem like David Gow’s play. Gow even offers solutions to the problems that our white men create for us. The script isn’t perfect, but it does offer the victims of predatory, toxic male behavior a way out. Cherry Docs a more compassionate play than is credited. Continue reading →
(Boston, MA) Steel Magnolias is a theatre classic. It can be seen in fringe and community productions across the country. The 1989 movie starring Sally Fields and Dolly Parton has firmly cemented itself into the 80’s pop culture. The 2012 TV-movie starring Queen Latifah and, queen in her own right, Phylicia Rashad introduced a new generation to the story. It has survived well because of its timelessness. There will always be a need for safer-spaces where women can be themselves beyond the emotional and physical labors society demands from them. Hub Theatre’s production nestles into that need. Continue reading →
Presented by the Huntington Theatre Company Adapted from the book, The Lightening Thief by Rick Riordan Book by Joe Tracz Music and lyrics by Rob Rokicki Directed by Stephen Brackett Music direction by Wiley DeWeese Choreography by Patrick McCollum Fight direction by Rod Kinter New puppetry design by AchesonWalsh Design Studios
(Boston) Saturday afternoon’s performance of The Lightning Thief: The Percy Jackson Musical was an event for superfans and their friends. Children in Camp Half-Blood t-shirts and their adults congregated to the Huntington Theatre to watch this musical about modern day children of Greek gods. It’s not a production for everyone; it’s specifically written for devotees to the Rick Riordan book. Theatre-lovers will appreciate the ingenuity of the design team but they should attend knowing that this musical isn’t for them; It’s for fans in their childhood years. Continue reading →