Aug 02

One Percenters Gone Wild: “7 Rooms: The Masque of the Red Death”

Prospero (Juliet Bowler) welcomes you! Photo via Flat Earth Theatre.

Presented by Flat Earth Theatre
New plays by Sari Boren, Hortense Gerardo, Gabriel Graetz, MJ Halberstadt, Michal Lin, Cliff Odle, Kelly Smith
Directed by Jessica Ernst, David R. Gammons, Lee Mikeska Gardner, Shira Helena Gitlin, Johnny Nichols, Jr., Elizabeth Yvette Ramirez, LaToya T. Robinson
“Prospero” by Amy Lehrmitt; directed by Lindsay Eagle; performed by Juliet Bowler.

Aesthetics Designs by Michael Clark Wonson
Sound by Kyle Lampe
Costumes by Zane Kealey
Props & special effects by S Ayala
Showrunner: Amy Lehrmitt

Dramaturgy by Betsy Goldman

Full cast of actors: Sydney Roslin, Kira Helper, Kristen Heider, Michael Lin, Sharmarke Yusuf, Shanelle Villegas, Kalee Burrows, Olivia Dumaine, Naomi Ibasitas, Evan Turissini, Jo Michael Rezes, Blair Nodelman, Lorraine Kanyike, and Miles Wheeler II.

July 28 – August 15, 2021
Steamed on Zoom 
Tickets are Pay-What-You-Can
Flat Earth on social media: @FE_theatre

Accessibility Notes: This online event offers captioning. Instructions are available before, and during the live-stream. 

Review by Kitty Drexel

Content Warnings: Blood, strong language, abuse of white privilege, mentions of cannibalism 

ZOOM — Flat Earth Theatre’s 7 Rooms: The Masque of the Red Death is a massive undertaking of considerably wide and deep proportions that will impress even the most nihilistic of digital theatre naysayers. 7 Rooms will tantalize; it’ll tease; it’ll entreat you to shake your booty. 

Running July 28 – August 15, audience members are invited to attend a party at Prospero’s (Juliet Bowler) extravagant mansion. There’s no need to rabble rouse with dirty plebes sick with the plague. Not when there’s a fancy ball to attend!   Continue reading

Mar 22

Cry On Your Own Time: “A Fate Worse Than Death” #AFWTD21

Presented and Written by The Messy Theater Co. AFWTD Cast
Conceptualized and Directed by Billie Hassebrock
Assistant Directed by Stefan James
Stage Managers: Anika Nayak & Olivia Browne
Playwriting Consultant – Nick Freedson
Social Media Consultant – Sophia Schweik
Media Editor – Frank Mohler III
Featuring: Aaron Arpon, Alexandra Montalbano, Casey Corona, Curtis Andersen, Gloria Huang, Kristen Grace, Leo Goodman, Olivia Rose Nathan, Rhikki Cook, Sierra Hastings, Thomas Anawalt, and Tyler Davidson.

The online program is HERE

March 19-28, 2021
Streamed Online
All performances are FREE
Donations go to support the artists involved in this project.
Messy Theater Co on Instagram
#AFWTD21

Critique by Kitty Drexel

ZOOM — The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is a toll-free national network of crisis centers in the US. Under the Lifeline website’s “Get Involved” tab, anyone can download Lifeline logos, get brochures, and read recovery stories. It even has an Instagram-specific toolkit. All of this can be accessed without making a donation. Using this information is gloriously free of charge. Interested parties can learn how to support Lifeline’s work via the “Participate” tab.  

To speak to someone at Lifeline, please call 1-800-273-8255. The Lifeline on Twitter: @800273TALK, on Facebook, chat line

A Fate Worse Than Death by the Messy Theater Company is a show that includes strong themes of suicide and suicide prevention at the expense/ridicule of social media influencers. As of now, the show doesn’t communicate to its audience that it supports suicide prevention. Their website needs to include a logo, the name of the suicide prevention organization, quick links to resources, a suicide prevention organization donation button, and a phone number to call in an emergency. Just the phone number flashed briefly to the audience with a blurb at the end of the show isn’t enough. Continue reading

Nov 12

Vintage Neuroses in a Noir Package: “Unusual Things Have Happened: Tales of Everyday Horror”

Photo via Facebook; the cast at Charlestown Working Theatre.

Presented by imaginary beasts
Produced by special arrangement with the children of Shirley Jackson, and Catalyst Management, LLC. 
By Shirley Jackson
Directed by Mathew Woods
Ensemble: Laura Detwiler, Denise Drago, Lauren Foster, Molly Kimmerling, Amy Meyer, Bob Mussett, Jennifer Taschereau

November 2nd – November 16th, 2019
Charlestown Working Theater
442 Bunker Hill Street, Charlestown, MA  02129
The Beasts on Facebook

Trigger warning: psychological horror, emotional trauma, spooky ghosts

Critique by Kitty Drexel

“Journeys end in lovers meeting; I have spent an all but sleepless night, I have told lies and made a fool of myself, and the very air tastes like wine. I have been frightened half out of my foolish wits, but I have somehow earned this joy; I have been waiting for it for so long.”― Shirley Jackson, The Haunting of Hill House

(Charlestown, MA) imaginary beasts’ latest production, Unusual Things Have Happened: Tales of Everyday Horror brings the psychological pain of everyday anxiety into sharp focus. The beasts tell six stories adapted from the works of Shirley Jackson in a style that they have named “narrative theatre.” Cast members dictate the action onstage just as a third-person voice narrates the passages of a book.  It looks and sounds like a one or two-person Greek chorus.

The vignettes that make up the production examine the commonplace terrors that women experience on the daily: isolation, powerlessness, and disorder. There is puppetry, mime, and yes, scene narration. The narrators are like impartial babysitters watching their human companions toddle towards danger. They might stop them, but where’s the fun in that?  Continue reading

Apr 01

He’s Asking For It: “Extremities”

Photo credit: Ashley Yung; Alissa Cordeiro (Marjorie)

Presented by Also Known As Theatre
In partnership with Boston Area Rape Crisis Center (barcc)
By William Matrosimone
Directed by Alexandra Smith
Fight choreography by Jessica Scout Malone

March 28 – April 13, 2019
First Church Cambridge
11 Garden St.,
Cambridge, MA 02138

Critique by Kitty Drexel

Trigger warning: assault, sexual assault, gas lighting, victim blaming

(Cambridge, MA) It’s a cruel and unusual punishment to be found at guilty of assault when protecting oneself from attacker. Cyntoia Brown served 15 years in prison for murdering a man who bought her for sex so she could flee. At 16 years old, she was tried her as an adult and sentenced to 51 years in prison without parole. She has only recently received clemency for her unreasonably harsh and unjust sentencing. Also Known As Theatre’s production of Extremities puts into stark relief just how easy it is for the US legal system to turn on women for not performing victimhood to exacting standards. Brown is receiving a modicum of justice but how many women will not? Continue reading

May 17

A Few Eyes Lost Between Brothers: EYES SHUT. DOOR OPEN.

Photo by Marc J. Franklin

Photo by Marc J. Franklin; nothing says family like violent hugs.

Presented by CMS Productions & Wax Wings Productions
Written by Cassie M. Seinuk
Directed by Christopher Randolph

May 13 – 26, 2016
Warehouse XI
11 Sanborn Court
Somerville, MA
ESDO on Facebook

Review by Kitty Drexel

(Somerville, MA) Eyes Shut. Door Open. was not what I expected. I anticipated a dramatic play about two brothers sorting out their issues after an art exhibit. One of the characters wears an eye patch, I expected some silly pirate jokes and an origin story. There’s a lady in the show. I expected a feminist twist or two. I did not expect to be creepy out of my seat by jaw-clenching psychological thrills. This play starts out tame but it doesn’t stay that way. Continue reading

Oct 29

A Gore-tastic Romp: EVIL DEAD, THE MUSICAL

Photo care of Arts After Hours Facebook Page; Ash gets all the hotties.

Arts After Hours
Book and Lyrics by George Reinblatt
Music by Frank Cipolla, Christopher Bond, Melissa Morris, George Reinblatt
Music Supervision by Frank Cipolla
Additional Lyrics by Christopher Bond Additional Music by Rob Daleman
Directed by Corey Jackson
Music directed by Mario Cruz
Choreographed by Nicole Spirito

October 24, 2013- October 31, 2013 – Act NOW, most shows are sold out!
LynnArts Rantoul Black Box Theatre
25 Exchange Street
Lynn, Massachusetts
Arts After Hours on Facebook

Review By: Kate Lew Idlebrook

(Lynn) It ‘s Halloween. There’s lots to do, so why run to Lynn and spend the evening watching the Arts After Hours production of Evil Dead: the Musical? Because it’s bloody fun. That’s why.

And it doesn’t get much more Halloweeny than this.  It’s a spoof of your typical teenage horror flick, a story we all know well. Five college students go on spring break to a deserted cabin in the woods. They end up confronting an unspeakable evil that promises,  “It’ll be just like you were killed by some guy named Don”. Do you get it? They’ll be dead by dawn. Laughing? Then you’ll love the show. Continue reading

Nov 18

Breaching the Dark: “The Man in The Couch”

Photograph by Becca A. Lewis

Writer and director Alison Meirowitz/McCarthy
Now running, Nov. 2-18 Thurs-Sat 8pm, Sun 3pm
Review by Kitty Drexel
(Boston) The Man in the Couchis a hard candy nugget of science fiction and horror. On the surface it is smooth and hard and the characters’ inner depths continue to be the same. It isn’t sweet but it can offer some satisfaction. Our main characters are the rock and hard place that they have to breach in order to regain relative sanity/peace. It is reminiscent of The Twilight Zoneepisode “Nothing in the Dark” about an old woman shut away in an apartment to avoid meeting “Mr. Death” (the swoon-inducing Robert Redford). Continue reading
Oct 15

Eat Your Heart Out: THE REVENANTS

Photo credit: Karen Ladany; Audrey Lynn Sylvia as Karen and William Schuller as Joe

presented by Happy Medium Theatre Company
@The Factory Theatre
Boston, MA
October 12th – 20th, 2012

Happy Medium Theatre Facebook Page

Review by Craig Idlebrook

(Boston) The premise of the zombie apocalypse seems well-suited for allegory. George Romero, the genre’s cinematic Godfather, has used the reanimated to explore every theme from racial tension to internet addiction. Meanwhile, the AMC television series the Walking Dead has found success by throwing a band of survivors together and having them struggle over what separates humans from the masses
of undead. In a way, zombies have become the ultimate MacGuffin, a plot device that stirs our heroes to action and soul-searching. Continue reading

Sep 26

“Immaterial Girl” as an Old-Fashioned Haunted House (Episode 1 of Blood Rose Rising)

Photo Credit: Honest Ghost Productions LLC

Episode 1 of Blood Rose Rising
presented by Honest Ghost Productions
Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays, starting September 14 – November 18
NAGA Nightclub, Central Square
450 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02139

Blood Rose Rising Facebook Page

Review by Gillian Daniels

(Cambridge) A real gothic story isn’t about tragic romance, torture, or death, but houses. Houses with long histories and dark secrets. In the contemporary setting of Cambridge, Immaterial Girl offers the beginning to an old-fashioned gothic serial centered on the haunted Blackwood Manor. Continue reading

Mar 25

Hookman: Existential Thriller for the 21st Century Girl

 

Joe Kidawski and Erin Butcher, Photo credit: Company One

Hookman by Lauren Yee, Company One, Boston Center for the Arts Hall A, 3/23/12-4/14/12, http://www.companyone.org/Season13/Hookman/synopsis.shtml.

Reviewed by Gillian Daniels

(Boston, MA) Lexi (Erin Eva Butcher) appears to be the only one in Hookman aware she’s in slasher movie.

With reason to believe a masked murderer (Joseph Kidawski) is responsible for the death of her friend Jess (Nicole Prefontaine), she attempts to protect her college roommate (Pearl Shin) and various others from his hook. Continue reading