Dec 08

Delightfully Off-Kilter: “13 Things About Ed Carpolotti”

Photo by Meghan Moore.

Photo by Meghan Moore.

Presented by Merrimack Repertory Theatre
Book, Music and Lyrics by Barry Kleinbort
Based on a play by Jeffrey Hatcher

November 28 – December 21, 2014
50 East Merrimack Street
Lowell, MA
MRT on Facebook

Review by Craig Idlebrook

(Lowell, MA) It’s one thing to create a play that mimics the feeling of being trapped in a conversation with someone who is batty; it’s another to make such a play entertaining. As the play 13 Things About Ed Carpolotti demonstrates, the difference is all in the storytelling prowess of the off-putting character. Continue reading

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Oct 14

Earnest and Flawed: BENT

This tragic yet beautiful photo was found on the Zeitgeist Facebook page. No photo credit was found.

This tragic yet beautiful photo was found on the Zeitgeist Facebook page. No photo credit was found.

Presented by Zeitgeist Stage Company
By Martin Sherman
Directed by David Miller

Boston Center for the Arts
September 19th – October 11th, 2014
Zeitgeist on Facebook

Review by Craig Idlebrook

(Boston, MA) Terror comes when you slowly realize that you have run out of ways to escape a horrible situation. It can first comes in drips, and then all at once. Homosexuals in Nazi Germany first lived on the knife’s edge in a non-sanctioned world of winks and nods. In the play Bent, they succumb to terror in one fell swoop, but then realize that perhaps the most terrifying thing of all is when one can’t find the bottom of a nightmare. Then, all that one can do is accept what is happening and find ways to regain shreds of dignity. Continue reading

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Oct 08

Better Blurred Lines: “La Cage Aux Folles”

http://www.nsmt.org/images/Press/2013/LaCageauxFolles/production/NSMT-LaCage-GeorgesAlbin.jpg

Photo©Paul Lyden, Charles Shaughnessy (Georges) and Johnathan Hammond (Albin)

Presented by North Shore Music Theatre
Based on the play by Jean Poiret
Directed by Charles Repole
Choreography by Michael Lichtefeld
Book by Harvey Fierstein
Music and lyrics by Jerry Herman

September 4th – October 6, 2013
Beverly, MA
North Shore music Theatre on Facebook

Review by Craig Idlebrook

(Beverly) Somewhere in the middle of the fantastic North Shore Production of La Cage Aux Folles, I had an “aha” moment about the concept of drag.  As a child, I had never understood why some male transvestite performers seemed to equate dressing like a woman to dressing like Dolly Parton in her heyday.  It was a mystery I didn’t realize I hadn’t solved until I was watching this thoughtful, nuanced and hysterical play come to life.  For some, going drag isn’t about replicating the other gender; instead, it’s about upending fixed norms on what it means to be a man or a woman.  (File under “Duh.”) Continue reading

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