Mar 03

Upbeat in the midst of despair: “The Joshua Show”

Presented by Puppet Showplace Theatre
Written and Starring Joshua Holden

February 28-March 1, 2014
Brookline, MA
Puppet Showplace on Facebook

Review by Noelani Kamelamela

(Brookline) Puppet Showplace Theatre mostly runs shows geared towards young children, with lessons and surprises aplenty for the tiny set.  Puppets@Nite brought a special two night only show to the space with the sprightly, multi-talented and effervescent Joshua Holden.  Continue reading

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Mar 03

Character-Building: EQUALLY DIVIDED

Photo by Meghan Moore. Pictured: Jill Tanner, Felicity La Fortune, Will Lyman and Anthony Newfield.

Photo by Meghan Moore. Pictured: Jill Tanner, Felicity La Fortune, Will Lyman and Anthony Newfield.

Presented by Merrimack Repertory Theatre
by Ronald Harwood
Directed by Charles Towers

February 13th – March 9th, 2014
Lowell, MA
MRT on Facebook

Review by Craig Idlebrook

(Lowell) Professional baseball player Ichiro Suzuki once got into hot water for saying that when his team is losing year after year he focuses instead on playing for his own individual accomplishments.  To some, it showed selfishness, but to me it showed professionalism. Continue reading

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Mar 03

Do the Research Before Enjoying: MAN IN A CASE

Presented by ArtsEmerson: The World On Stage
Adapted from Two Stories by Anton Chekhov
Adapted and Directed by Annie-B Parson & Paul Lazar/Big Dance Theater
Choreographed by Annie-B Parson
Featuring Mikhail Baryshnikov, Tymberly Canale, Chris Giarmo, Paul Lazar and Aaron Mattocks

February 25 – March 2, 2014
Emerson/Cutler Majestic Theatre
219 Tremont Street
Boston, MA
ArtsEmerson on Facebook
Baryshnikov Productions on Facebook
Big Dance Theater on Facebook

Review by Kitty Drexel

My apologies to ArtsEmerson, Big Dance Theatre, Baryshnikov Productions and anyone else I forgot to mention for the tardiness of this review. I was waylaid by illness this weekend and couldn’t complete my review.

(Boston) Man in a Case is effective theatre that turns Chekhov on its head while retelling the two classic stories “Man in a Case” and “Almost Love.” It does not bridge the 19th and the 21st centuries as advertised. It does, however, transport the viewer into an existential dreamspace/nightmare of meta and experimental theatre. Just in case one is mislead by my description, this was an interesting, thought-provoking performance but it’s not light fare for a family hoping to experience “culture” in the city. Man in a Case could be considered “weird” and weird theatre can be exquisite. It all depends on perspective. Continue reading

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Feb 27

Sins of the Father: DEATH OF A SALESMAN

Photo by Mark S. Howard.

Photo by Mark S. Howard.

Presented by Lyric Stage Co of Boston (40 Years)
By Arthur Miller
Directed by Spiro Veloudos

February 14 to March 15, 2014
Boston, MA
Lyric Stage on Facebook

Review by Kitty Drexel

From the program notes: Robert N. Wilson, The Writer as Social Seer

“Willy’s failure is our failure, for we are also involved in the cult of success, and we, too, measure men by occupational attainment rather than by some sympathetic calculus of the whole human being. We are all partners in the American Dream and parties to the conspiracy of silence surrounding the fact that failures must by definition outnumber successes, given our cultural ground rules and or singular interpretations of the words ‘success’ and ‘failure’.”

(Boston) There is so much that The Lyric’s production of Death of a Salesman gets right. This is a fantastic production – the best of theirs I’ve seen all season, which is saying a lot for a theatre that regularly that creates solid art. It is the same cut and dried script that generations have come to love with a few spins that make it new and poignant.   Continue reading

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Feb 18

Bobby is an Immature Dick: COMPANY

61495_549787648449858_87023996_n Presented by Moonbox Productions
Music & lyrics By Stephen Sondheim
Book by George Furth
Orchestrations by Jonathan Tunick
Directed by Allison Olivia Choat
Music directed by Dan Rodriguez
Super fun choreography by Rachel Bertone

February 7 – March 1, 2014
Nancy and Edward Roberts Studio Theatre
Boston Center for the Arts
527 Tremont Street, Boston’s South End
Moonbox on Facebook

Every ticket benefits: Music for Food

Review by Kitty Drexel

(Boston) They say that Stephen Sondheim is one of those composers that people either love or hate. I disagree. There is so much in his catalogue that there could easily be something for everyone. Company, like Sondheim himself, is one of those shows that people have decided others love or hate. Again, I disagree. There are many moments in Company that are golden. Some are not. Depending how much one enjoys Sondheim (or not) opinion fluctuates greatly. This production by Moonbox has several golden moments that I feel reflect the truths Sondheim sharing in his musical. Other moments are not so effective. Continue reading

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Feb 14

Unattainable Excellence for Boston: WITNESS UGANDA

Photo: Gretjen Helene Photography; Adeola Role with Griffin Matthews and Emma Hunton.

Presented by American Repertory Theatre
By Matt Gould and Griffin Matthews
Directed by Diane Paulus
Music Directed by Remy Kurs
Choreography by Darrell Grand Moultrie

Based on true events.

February 4 – March 16, 2014
ASL Interpreted performances: Tues, March 4 at 7:30pm; Sun, March 9 at 2:00pm.
Audio Described performances: Wed, March 5 at 7:30pm; Sat, March 8 at 2:00pm.
Loeb Drama Center
64 Brattle St.
Cambridge, MA 02138
A.R.T. on Facebook
Witness Uganda on Facebook

Review by Kitty Drexel
(Cambridge)In Witness Uganda, Griffin (character inspired by co-creator Griffin Matthews) goes to Uganda on a mission to build a school for needy children. He hopes to make the world a better place and find life purpose. He discovers that American aid workers are not building schools for the community. The Ugandan children are not receiving an education. Together, Griffin, his best friend Ryan and a group of orphans fight to better the lives of Ugandans. Witness Uganda is about the complications of international giving in third world countries, the role community plays on a global scale, and Man’s eternal struggle for purpose. Continue reading

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Feb 13

Repetition is Awesome. Repetition is Awesome: PEGGY PICKIT SEES THE FACE OF GOD

Photo care of Apollinaire facebook page.

Presented by Apollinaire Theatre Company
by Roland Schimmelpfennig
Directed by Megan Sandberg-Zakian

February 7 – March 1, 2014
Chelsea Theatre Works
189 Winnisimmet Street
Chelsea, MA
Apollinaire on Facebook

Review by Craig Idlebrook

(Chelsea) We cling to words as if they were a trail of breadcrumbs in a deep, dark forest.  The cadence of conversations is the most important music in our lives.  The collective expectation of how words flow in human speech, hardwired into our brains, can be the playwright’s best friend or worst enemy.  As soon as a script is spoken aloud, the dialogue is judged for whether or not it rings true. If, however, the script can present a few verbal twists and turns that take us to unexpected places, the playwright has the audience eating out of the palm of his/her hand. Continue reading

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Feb 10

Clear the Room: “Absence”

http://www.bu.edu/bpt/files/2014/02/ABSENCE-BPT-2014-193.jpg

Photograph credit: Kalman Zabarsky.

Presented by Boston Playwrights’ Theatre
Written by Peter M. Floyd aka PFlo
Directed by Megan Schy Gleeson

February 6 – March 2, 2014
Boston Playwright’s Theatre
Boston, MA
BPT on Facebook

Review by Noelani Kamelamela

(Boston) Absence, Peter M. Floyd’s first full length play, is a multi-layered and filmic production at Boston Playwright’s Theatre which was both a terror and a joy to see.

At a slim 90 minutes without intermission, it is finely focused on Helen, who in her 70s experiences the slowly squeezing hand of time on her body and mind, but not her soul.  Kippy Goldfarb, who stepped up when Joanna Merlin took ill, as Helen is a clear and self-possessed woman, and it is hard to believe that Helen could, in fact, be suffering from dementia or Alzheimer’s at all.  Helen’s passion play is underscored by a serious exploration of how her family and herself must undertake to keep her as safe and as sane as possible.   Continue reading

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Apr 25

Help Make The Theatre Geek’s Dream Come True!

season-teasersmallSwiftly Tilting Theatre Project, Inc.
Swiftly Tilting Theatre’s Facebook Page

Kickstarter Page
The Taming of the Shrew by William Shakespeare
January 9-19, 2014, at The Chain Theatre, 21-28 45th Rd, Long Island City, NY
Iphigenia at Aulis by Euripides
March 31-April 13, 2014, at The Secret Theatre’s Poco Theatre, 44-02 33rd St, Long Island City, NY

I passed on my blog to Kitty Drexel when I realized that I could no longer deny my desire to create a theatre company.  Long Island City, one of the major residences of New York based theatre people, is becoming an economical alternative for theatrical productions.  I was born in New Jersey, so it was only a matter of time before I inched my way back to the area.  I want to give artists and audiences the opportunity to be a part of quality theatre, regardless of income.  I am trying to do what Whistler in the Dark has done for Boston to the Queens area.

Swiftly Tilting Theatre Project is an artist community that will work towards bringing artists and audiences together while allowing us all to not be crushed by hard economic times.

Please watch the video and even the smallest pledge to the Kickstarter will help my dream become a reality.

Becca Kidwell, Chief Geek. Emerita

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Apr 02

Properly and Honestly: MASTER CLASS

Amelia Broome as Maria Callas; Photo: Rob Lorino

Presented by New Repertory Theatre

A play with music by Terrence McNally
Directed by Antonio Ocampo-Guzman

Charles Mosesian Theater
Watertown, MA 02472
March 31 – April 21, 2013
New Rep Facebook Page

Review by Kitty Drexel

(Watertown) Amelia Broome doesn’t use a Greek accent in her portrayal as international treasure and opera superstar, Maria Callas. The audience doesn’t have the luxury of knowing why Broome chose not to use an accent. Broome’s performance is effective without one so the reasons don’t matter.

Master Class is a grand opportunity for non-Classical singers (plebes) to experience the horror and joy that is operatic study. It is a (relatively) cheap vocal coaching for its length and history wrapped in a convenient package. The dialogue is only slightly dramatized for the benefit of the audience. The majority of Callas’ lessons and helpful hints are comments that any voice teacher could and would give her student. The majority of these same lessons and hints are conveyed in a similar manner as well. Continue reading

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