Representation matters. Straight White Men is written by an Asian playwright. Noelani Kamelamela was asked to write a review in addition to the critique written by Kitty Drexel. Both are posted below.
Review by Noelani Kamelamela
(Watertown, MA) The synopsis of Straight White Men seems like it would be a Men’s Rights Activist’s nearest and dearest dream brought to life. I imagine a white man in a polo shirt and khakis sitting down by the light of a tiki torch to read what would be a thoroughly delightful description: after all, the main action only involves four white men. Yup. Four white men. No women. No people of color. This hypothetical straight white man would see the name Young Jean Lee and maybe remember sweet ole Robert E. Lee. Perhaps it hearkens him back to time before, when America was great. “What a fine night of theatre!” this man in a barcalounger would remark aloud as he reached for his credit card and purchased a ticket to New Rep Theatre’s production which runs at the Mosesian Center for the Arts in Watertown through September 30th.Continue reading →
Trigger warning: references to bestiality, incestuous kissing
(Boston, MA) Sleeping Wezel’s Timbuktu, USA is an absurd political satire made digestible via the mechanics of a bedroom farce. There is opportunity a plenty to be delightfully offended by the comings and goings of Prestininzi’s chaotic neutral politicians. The buffoonery so closely resembles the US current political boondoggle that audience members may leave confused. Fear not, Timbuktu, USA is a diversion well worth any disorientation.Continue reading →
Presented by Also Known As Theatre Written by Shelley M. Hobbs Directed by Alexandra Smith Produced by Kelly Smith
August 17 through September 2 Fridays and Saturdays at 8:00PM Sundays at 2:00PM Calderwood Pavilion at Boston Center for the Arts 527 Tremont Street, Boston, Massachusetts 02116 The Stanford Calderwood Pavilion on Facebook
Written by Bishop C. Knight
(South End, Boston, MA) OOH child, nothing but praise for A Good Death! I’m about to provide a review that’s emotionally charged with encouragement – for you to see this play and to bring loved ones; especially for you to bring religious relatives you have trouble communicating with. I’ll use the words love and queer repeatedly, because it is a play about lesbian companions who are platonic life partners. I’ll show why Boston is damn lucky to have Also Known As Theatre (AKA) as it newest independent theatre company. I want AKA to flourish. I want Alison Bechdel to attend. I want YOU to attend, and here’s why:Continue reading →
(Boston, MA) When a giant dandelion bursts out of the ground in their Philadelphia yard, Kwamaine (the charming Christian Scales) is enchanted while his older brother, Jalil (Kadahj Bennett, who pulls some of the best humorous faces I’ve seen on any given stage), is understandably baffled. Their harassed mother, Raquelle (Lyndsay Allyn Cox), is mostly just annoyed. Writer Josh Wilder and director Summer L. Williams deliver an odd, funny city-based fable that becomes a magic realist quest through systemic poverty, race, The Cosby Show, and the insulating nature of fantasies.Continue reading →
Presented by Fresh Ink Theatre Written by John J King Directed by Stephanie LeBolt In collaboration with the Boston Public Library Playwright-in-Residence program and part of the Push Project Residency at Boston Center for the Arts
Warning: Parts of this play require audience interaction. If that isn’t your thing, sit in the back.
(Boston, MA) Martha’s (b)Rainstorm: A Boston Fairytale pays homage to our fair city through Native myth, pop culture references, and pseudo–science. It tackles the very real threat of climate change on our Massachusetts shores through democratic process. Fresh Ink’s production is still in its nascent stage but it a beautiful show bursting with possibility.
(Stoneham, Massachusetts)This was a production ostensibly about an Elvis Presley impersonator, but it turned out to be an entertaining tale about much more – 1960s billboard music in general, dance as freeing self-expression, femme identity, family, marriage, and pregnancy. On a warm spring day, a pal and I attended the last show of the play’s run, and The Legend of Georgia McBride was an absolutely perfect performance for that breezy Sunday afternoon. Greater Boston Stage Company in Stoneham is a comfortable venue, and everyone loved the music featured throughout the play. Ushers tapped their feet. Patrons around me snapped, clapped, and sang along. The actors infused the story with a hopeful and happy energy that kept the audience laughing, commiserating, intrigued, engaged, and enthusiastic.Continue reading →
(Lowell, MA) Bringing a comic book to life on stage can be extremely difficult, but deconstructing the comic book genre onstage can bring a new round of pitfalls. While the Merrimack Repertory Theatre production of “The Villains’ Supper Club” sometimes stumbles through the scattershot superhero world created by Lila Rose Kaplan’s script, it does so with a winsome and improvisational spirit. This, combined with the fact that Rose Kaplan has packed the script with some really great comical lines, leaves theatergoers with a visually stunning and utterly unique theatrical experience that may not always make sense, but is always entertaining. Continue reading →
(Boston, MA) Fresh Ink Theatre Presents: Heritage Hill Naturals is nominally an examination of the millennial generation’s anxiety, paralysis, and distractions from their unique existential malaise. These distractions come in the form of Buzzfeed memes, selfie stick subculture, and month-long agro-tourism stints in rural America. Our protagonist, Lucy, seeks self-enlightenment, or at least solace from her anxiety and depression at Heritage Hill Naturals, one such farm in rural Georgia. Here, she finds anything but, amongst a cast of quirky characters, and strange circumstances beyond her scope of experience or her best efforts at benevolence. Continue reading →
(Central Square, Cambridge)DIANA! was marketed as an all-women musical to be performed by a cast of passionate comediennes who celebrate imperfection, and this was the only preparation patrons were provided, because that’s how it goes in the improv comedy circuit. Late night audiences show up, some degree of inebriated and half-heartedly hoping our performers are capable of spontaneously spurning out sunny slapstick satire. The cast of DIANA! had their assignment – to parody imperfection – and they did a terribly terrific job of mocking classy “classic people” and laughing at highbrow literature.Continue reading →
(Somerville, MA) When the words “Boston” and “startup” are used in the same sentence, most people think of software or biotech. However, Boston has also been a long-time incubator for some of the best comedy of this generation. Countless internationally famous comedians have cut their teeth at local institutions, such as The Comedy Studio and Comedy Connection. Today, the local comedy community is as welcoming as it is thriving—I recently heard a heartwarming story in which a young man who was interested in comedy visited a newly opened theater, and the theater manager let him in, took him in front of the empty theater, and just lit the spotlight for him, because he had never been onstage before. There are more theaters, shows, and open mics now, and in more areas of the city, than ever before. New performers have every opportunity to try telling jokes for the first time in their lives, while veteran comics march on creating, experimenting, and developing their unique voices, as well as producing independent shows. Audiences only need to Google “comedy Boston” for a slew of high-quality options to choose from on any given night of the week. Continue reading →