Sep 05

Witchcraft, Politics and Womanhood: “The Weird”

Photo credit: Nile Hawver/Nile Scott Shots

Presented by Off the Grid Theatre Company
Written by Kirsten Greenidge, Obehi Janice, Lila Rose Kaplan, and John Kuntz
Directed by Steven Bogart

September 1-16, 2017
Calderwood Pavilion at the BCA
527 Tremont St. Boston, MA
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Review by Polly Goss

(Boston, MA)The Weird is the latest devised piece from Off the Grid Theatre Company. Artistic Director Alexis Scheer, invited 4 different Boston based writers to compose pieces that tackle the intersection between belief in witchcraft and politics. An ambitious and intriguing premise, which unfortunately The Weird does not fulfill. The Weird`s cast includes many talented actors, who do a good job of adding authenticity to the often fragmented writing. However the chaotic and incoherent writing, means the show ultimately fails to tackle any one theme in depth and leaves the audience feeling unsatisfied and underwhelmed. Continue reading

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May 02

Not Your Peaches ‘N Cream, Minority Vagina: C1’s “peerless”

Khloe Alice Lin as L, James Wechsler as D, and Kim Klasner as M in peerless (credit_Paul Fox). It will not be okay.

 

Presented by Company One Theatre and the Boston Public Library
Written by Jiehae Park
Based on Shakespeare’s Macbeth
Directed by Steven Bogart
Dramaturgy by Haley Fluke
Choreography by Beverly Diaz

April 27 – May 27, 2017
Rabb Hall, Central Library in Copley Square
Boston, MA
C1 on Facebook
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Review by Kitty Drexel

“The raven himself is hoarse
That croaks the fatal entrance of Duncan
Under my battlements.”
– Lady Macbeth, Mackers, Shakespeare

(Boston, MA) Baby Boomers have ruined the economy for millennials. My own well-intentioned parents asked me when I’m going to buy a house. My wife and I could only laugh. Then we cried. We cried a lot. It’s not going to happen. We have too much student loan debt. Houses in Somerville are no longer things the middle-class can afford.  Continue reading

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Dec 14

Getting to Maybe: EXPOSED

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The TV has no context in this image.

Presented by Boston Center for American Performance and Boston Playwrights’ Theatre
Written by Robert Brustein
Directed by Steven Bogart
Compositions by Mark Bruckner
Musical direction by Catherine Stornetta

Dec. 10 – Dec. 18, 2015
Boston Center for the Arts
Wimberly Theatre
Boston, MA
BPT on Facebook

Review by Kitty Drexel

(Boston, MA) Normally, I adore a good potty-mouthed political satire.  I feel less alone knowing that my fellow humans also think that the Govt., its politicians, and processes are broken. As Republicans, Democrats, Independents, etc, we can all agree that the system needs an overhaul. Satires give me a modicum of hope for the future. Continue reading

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Oct 06

The Government Has No Jurisdiction in A Uterus: DRY LAND

Photo credit: Paul Fox

Photo credit: Paul Fox; Detergent should only be used to clean clothing, not a uterus.

Presented by Company One
Written by Ruby Rae Spiegel
Directed by Steven Bogart
Dramaturgy by Jessie Baxter

October 2 – 30, 2015
Plaza Theatre
Boston Center for the Arts
Boston, MA
C1 on Facebook

Review by Kitty Drexel

(Boston, MA) For as long as there have been uteruses, there have been abortions. For almost as long as there have been abortions, there have been people desiring to control the contents of a uterus that isn’t theirs. Everyone, regardless of gender, deserves to know the capability of their body. Everyone with a uterus deserves to choose what is best for that uterus whether that means ending or beginning a pregnancy. A uterus shouldn’t be political. It is privately owned. No one gets to make decisions about my body but me. I support Planned Parenthood because I believe that everyone else deserves that freedom too.   

Company One’s production of Dry Land is about the consequences of abstinence only education, institutionalized ignorance, and socialized body shaming. Amy (Stephanie Recio) is a pregnant teenager. She doesn’t give us any specifics but it’s implied that she had consensual sex with a boy. Unfortunately, Amy lives in Florida. This means a safe, regulated surgical abortion is impossible for her to acquire without a parent’s input because Florida believes a teenager 16 or older is old enough to engage in sexual congress with someone up to seven years their senior but not to make their own decisions regarding the consequences of that sexual activity*. Instead, Amy has engaged Ester (Eva Hughes) to be her confidante in self-administering an at-home abortion. They are acquaintances through the high school swim team. Continue reading

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Mar 09

Infanticide: The Musical : SHOCKHEADED PETER

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Photo Credit- Liza Voll

Photo Credit- Liza Voll

Presented by Company One
Created for the stage by Julian Courch and Phelim McDermott
Original music and Lyrics by The Tiger Lillies
Adapted from Heinrich Hoffmann’s The Struwwelpeter
Music Direction by Walter Sickert
Directed by Steven Bogart
Featuring Walter Sickert and the Army of Broken Toys

March 6 – April 4, 2015
Modern Theatre at Suffolk University
525 Washington Street Boston, MA
Company One on Facebook
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Review by Danielle Rosvally

(Boston, MA) All the macabre poetic whimsy of Edward Gorey combined with the nostalgic cartoony lines of Disney’s Haunted Mansion are on display in Company One’s Shockheaded Peter. Fans of local band Walter Sickert and the Army of Broken Toys will recognize the musical style of this production, and new aficionados are in for a treat. The Toys bring their incredible sense of boisterous musicality and penchant for dark themes to this ninety minutes piece that marries puppetry with physical performance to create a poetic ode to infanticide. Continue reading

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Feb 11

Totally Rad To The Max: Bogart and Lement’s “PINOCCHIO”

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Photo by by Kippy Goldfarb.

Presented by Wheelock Family Theatre
Adapted by Steven Bogart and Wendy Lement
Based on the book The Adventures of Pinocchio by Carlo Collodi
Directed by Steven Bogart
Music directed/composed by Mary Bichner
Choreographed by Patricia Manalo Bochnak
Dramaturg: Kate Snodgrass
Sign Performers: Jola Leary, Adrianna Kathryn Neefus, Desiree Weems Sheppard

Jan. 30 – Feb. 22, 2015
ASL/Audio description: Feb 12,20,22
200 The Riverway
Boston, MA
Wheelock on Facebook

Review by Kitty Drexel

(Boston, MA) Many years ago, when I was a burgeoning opera singer, I attempted to read Collodi’s Pinocchio in the original Italian to learn the language. Pinocchio, originating as a series of short stories in an Italian magazine, is a convoluted tale of dramatic proportions about a little wooden puppet-boy who gets into scrapes only to be saved by those who inexplicably love him. Pinocchio has no social skills, no respect, and no discipline. Yet,his father Geppetto and the Blue Fairy are devoted anyway. I read about ¾ of the book on my journey towards bilingualism. Considering my penchant for justice and the frequency in which Pinocchio is rewarded for his bad behavior, I’m surprised I slogged through as much as I did. Continue reading

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Feb 17

Violence and Its Aftermath Explored in “Interference”

Icarus

Presented by Liars and Believers
Directed by Steven Bogart
Created by Many Collaborators

February 12, 2014
Club Oberon
Cambridge, MA
Liars and Believers on Facebook

Review by Gillian Daniels

Does Interference work as a play?  No, but I’m not sure if it’s meant to cohere as the kind of story with a single start and finish.  Liars and Believers have created an immersive experience with mixed results, one that works well enough when staged at a fantastic venue like the Oberon.  Similarly to Lunar Labyrinth, though, the last effort I saw by Liars and Believers, Interference is a series of vignettes inspired by a single work.  Here, the theater group takes its cues from Pablo Picasso’s 1937 painting, “Guernica.” Continue reading

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Feb 14

Wandering into the “Lunar Labyrinth”

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Based on “A Lunar Labyrinth” by Neil Gaiman
Directed by Steven Bogart
Music composed by Mary Bichner, Mali Sastri, John J. King, Phillip Berman and Jesse Amerding
Harp incidental music by Phillip Berman

Presented by Liars & Believers

February 13 @ 8pm (only one performance, alas!)
Club Oberon
Cambridge, MA
Liars & Believers Facebook Page

Review by Special Guest: Noe Kamelamela

(Cambridge) Lunar Labyrinth was truly a collaborative performance, a meeting of varied art forms.  A theatrical adaptation of a chilling story which Neil Gaiman specifically wrote for Liars & Believers, this production made for a night filled with nontraditional staged performance buoyed by the aide of formatted storytelling styles and brave performers. Continue reading

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