Apr 01

rogerandtom: Pardon My Fourth Wall

 

Stephen Radochia and Anna Waldron, Photo by Diane Libby.

rogerandtom by Julien Schwab, Simple Machine Theatre, Davis Square Theatre, 3/30/12-4/7/12, http://www.simplemachinetheatre.com/productions.html. (one spoiler–marked)

Reviewed by Becca Kidwell

(Somerville, MA) Julien Schwab takes the idea of a play within a play to a new level.  Exploring drama and its tools, rogerandtom pulls, tears, twists, and turns its melodramatic plot cleverly until its end. Continue reading

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Oct 26

A Play of Imagination Leaves Little to Imagine

The Turn of the Screw by Jeffrey Hatcher, Stoneham Theatre, 10/21/10-11/7/10

http://www.stonehamtheatre.org/

Photo: Craig Bailey/Perspective Photo

Reviewed by Becca Kidwell

Gianni Downs’ minimalistic scenery welcomes the audience to an atmospheric ghost story.  As the audience enters the theatre, they see a raked black stage with a single deep purple velvet chair and slight blue lighting on the stage.  However, the main focal point runs from the stage to the balcony—a collection of ropes tied off in waves across the ceiling that lead to ropes hanging down next to the chair.  I’m intrigued.  Upon reading the director’s notes in the program, I am enthusiastic to see her desire to honor Henry James’ preference to leave fear to the imagination.  Unfortunately, from the time the house lights go down to the curtain call, I see too much.  The heavy-handed interpretation of the director combined with exaggerated characterizations lead to a production that is only scary in that it does not trust its material or its audience. Continue reading

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