May 25

The Art of Making a Practical Thing Pretty: “Toni Stone”

Jennifer Mogbock as Toni Stone; Photograph © T Charles Erickson

Presented by The Huntington
Written and Directed by Lydia R. Diamond
Inspired by Curveball: The Remarkable True Story of Toni Stone by Martha Ackmann
Choreography by Ebony Williams
Dramaturgy by Charles Haugland
Fight direction and intimacy choreography by Ted Hewlett
Vocal coaching by Kim James Bey

May 17 – June 16, 2024
Blackout Performance: June 11, 7 pm
Open Caption Performance: 6/4 at 7:30 pm
ASL Performance: 6/7 at 8 pm
Audio Described Performance: 6/15 at 2:30 pm
Huntington Theatre 
264 Huntington Ave
Boston, MA 02115

2 hours and 20 minutes including intermission

Content Advisories: Toni Stone contains flashing lights, the use of herbal cigarettes, strong themes of racism and misogyny, and discussions of sexual violence. 

Critique by Kitty Drexel

BOSTON, Mass. — Lydia R Diamond’s Toni Stone had a triumphant opening on Wednesday, May 22. The Huntington took America’s pastime, the culture of and for the masses, into art for those who can afford a ticket. Toni Stone plays at The Huntington through June 16. It is available for pay-what-you-wish digital streaming HERE.

I’m a bespectacled geek made for comfort, not speed with an avid distaste for projectiles in all forms. I loathed gym class in school. Every New England summer, it felt like the world opened its heart and screen doors for Spring Training. I couldn’t wait for it to be over.  Continue reading

Sep 18

Witness History Repeating: “Prayer for the French Republic”

The cast of “Prayer for the French Republic.” Photo by T Charles Erickson.

Presented by The Huntington
By Joshua Harmon
Directed by Loretta Greco
Featuring: Amy Resnick, Nael Nacer, Tony Estrella, Joshua Chessin-Yudin, Talia Sulla, Carly Zien
Lighting Design by Christopher Akerlind
Scenic Design by Andrew Boyce
Dramaturgy by Charles Haugland

September 7-October 8, 2023
264 Huntington Ave
Boston MA

Review by Maegan Bergeron-Clearwood

Content advisory: This production contains vivid descriptions and discussions of antisemitism, violence and death related to the Holocaust, hate crimes, and sexual violence. It also contains one instance of blood.

BOSTON, Mass. — A classic adage: if you ask two Jews a question, you’ll get three opinions. Joshua Harmon’s Prayer for the French Republic features so many Jewish characters – secular and religious, Sephardic and Ashkenazi, patrilineal and matrilineal, Zionist and antizionist (and everywhere in between) – most of whom are relatives living under the same roof. Opinions are too numerous to count. Naturally, the play is three hours long.

The play is massive in other ways as well, bouncing between 2016 and 1944 and featuring 11 characters played by 10 actors. Harmon traces the legacy of the Salomon family, who have been living a comfortable middle-class life in Paris for decades, only to find themselves grappling with the same terrifying questions that their great-grandparents (and many Jewish ancestors before them) once faced: Are we safe here anymore? Is it time to flee? Continue reading

Mar 17

I Didn’t Make the World, I Just Live Here: Front Porch Arts Collective and The Huntington present “K-I-S-S-I-N-G”

Sharmarke Yusuf and Regan Sims; Photo: T Charles Erickson.

Presented by the Front Porch Arts Collective and The Huntington
Written by Lenelle Moïse
Directed by Dawn M. Simmons
Dramaturgy by Charles Haugland 
Choreography by Misha Shields
Intimacy consultant: Gregory Geffrard
Voice coaching by Christine Hamel, Rebecca Schneebaum
Cultural consultant: New England Aces

March 3, 2023 – April 2, 2023
The Calderwood Pavilion/BCA
Boston, MA 02116
2 hours and 20 minutes with one intermission
Digital access to the filmed performance is available until April 16, 2023. 

Spoiler Alert: New England Theatre Geek discusses a central theme of K-I-S-S-I-N-G. Knowing this information shouldn’t ruin the play’s other surprises, character arcs, or ending. Your reaction to this plot point, how the characters react to it, and the audience’s reaction may teach you about your own inherent biases.

Critique by Kitty Drexel

BOSTON, MA —  The Huntington and The Porch must please update their summary for K-I-S-S-I-N-G. It no longer accurately describes the show. I thought there was going to be a lot more David Bowie and at least one quote from bell hooks. There are no pizza box art projects or fireworks displays. The co-production is/was highly anticipated. That part can stay.

K-I-S-S-I-N-G is a quasi-Cinderella story about the emotional and sexual awakening of Lala (Regan Sims), a young woman living on the edge of poverty who craves art, poetry, and the feel of warm, supportive arms around her. She lives with her emotionally stunted mother Dot (the ethereal Patrese D McClain who dominated the stage with her presence) and her little brother Max. Lala’s father Jack (James Milord) loves Lala like the sun loves the sparkle on the ocean’s waves, but he can only visit once a week. Continue reading

Jan 30

Did she go crazy or did she go crazy at you?: “The Art of Burning”

Presented by The Huntington
In association with Hartford Stage
Written by Kate Snodgrass
Directed by Melia Bensussen
Original music by Jane Shaw
Fight direction and intimacy consultancy by Ted Hewlett
Dramaturgy by Charles Haugland
January 13–February 12, 2023

The Huntington @ Calderwood/BCA
527 Tremont St. 
Boston, MA 02216
The Playbill 

Production trigger warnings: slut shaming, victim blaming, mansplaining, manipulative and controlling behavior

Critique by Kitty Drexel

BOSTON, MA — Theatre doesn’t dive into feminine wrath the same way other media does. M3GAN, a current popular horror movie about a prescient AI doll, Jennifer’s Body (2009), and Teeth (2007) all hit the mainstream in ways that other horror plays haven’t. 

Popular theatre gets the Medea myth, the Greek tale about a half goddess, enchantress and unfortunate mother of Jason’s (of the Argonauts fame) who became so enraged by her husband’s infidelity she mercy-kills his children. Honestly, what did Jason expect? They don’t call it divine retribution for nothing.   

The Art of Burning follows five adults and one teen through vicious divorce proceedings. Patricia (Adrianne Krstansky in a wig that is doing no one any favors) and Jason (Rom Barkhordar) are about to finalize their divorce when Patricia requests full custody of their daughter Beth (Clio Contogenis). Jason’s girlfriend Katya (Vivia Font) is pregnant and Jason wants to keep it. Divorce lawyer and friend Mark (Michael Kaye) and his wife Charlene (Laura Latreille) are having marriage problems of their own.  Continue reading