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Theater

Personal Politics

by James Yeara August 8, 2012

thumb_32theaterpiceEDITH

Having its world premiere at the Fitzpatrick Main Stage in Stockbridge under the aegis of the Berkshire Theatre Group, Kelly Masterson’s Edith is a 21st-century history play centering on Edith Bolling Galt Wilson, second wife ...

Berkshire Theatre Group Fitzpatrick Main Stage

The Song’s the Thing

by B.A. Nilsson August 2, 2012

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Listen to Cole Porter’s “Night and Day.” The refrain’s hypnotic pulse draws you into its spell with on-the-beat keywords and descending melodic phrases. It has an odd construction for a pop song, with three 16-bar ...

Capital Repertory Theatre

Spells Cast, Spells Broken

by James Yeara August 2, 2012

At its best, Shakespeare and Company’s The Tempest is best critiqued by the playwright: “This is a most majestic vision, charming and harmonious” . . . “something rich and strange” . . . “Now I ...

Shakespeare & Company

Wilkommen!

by James Yeara July 25, 2012

thumb_30theaterpicCABARET

The Kit Kat Club set thrusts a slender runway, complete with large round bulbs for footlights, into the audience, like a slender pinkie sneaking into the Lakehouse’s formerly sacrosanct pit; instead of paying patrons sitting ...

Park Playhouse

Paradise Lost and Found

by Ralph Hammann July 25, 2012

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While I was not a big fan of the Todd Haynes film on which this new musical was based, I am glad that Messrs. Greenberg, Frankel and Korie were enamored of it. From the raw ...

Williamstown Theatre Festival

Bummer

by James Yeara July 19, 2012

Parasite Drag begins with Joellen (Elizabeth Aspenlieder) looking out of the upstage center door, a gold cross prominently place centered over the jamb. There’s a tornado watch in effect, Joellen announces to her husband Gene ...

Shakespeare & Company Elayne P. Bernstein Theatre

Merry Men

by B.A. Nilsson July 19, 2012

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Were you to laugh at this production hard enough to be-merde yourself, it would only be in keeping with the spirit of the play. Molière’s “imaginary invalid,” the valetudinarian Argan (Ethan Phillips), leads us at ...

Bard College Richard B. Fisher Center

Mugs

by James Yeara July 5, 2012

The laughs come regularly at Williamstown Theatre Festival’s 2012 season-opening Main Stage production. This isn’t surprising: Oscar Wilde was a genius, and The Importance of Being Earnest is his comic masterpiece. It’s a damned funny ...

Williamstown Theatre Festival

Among the Living

by James Yeara July 5, 2012

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  The annual Play by Play festival of new one-act plays at Stageworks/Hudson always has something to please almost everyone, and this year the eight one-acts, the performances, and the staging are uniformly excellent. Play by ...

The Common Touch

by James Yeara June 27, 2012

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The scene suggests Chekhov: Three sisters enter one after the other, their late-Edwardian dresses trailing across the floor. Their matching hats create a halo for each, and their white elbow-length opera gloves lend a statue’s ...

Shakespeare & Company

Brilliantly Conceived

by James Yeara May 29, 2012

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  No. 1: Intermission. No. 2: See this. No. 3: Extend the run. No. 1 is a one-word suggestion to playwright Duncan Macmillan; No. 2 is a two-word recommendation for anyone who likes theater; No. 3 is ...

Barrington Stage Company Stage 2

Digging In the Dirt

by rwydro May 16, 2012

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  Director John Sowle’s set design at Stageworks/Hudson makes it easy to see why The Mound Builders was the late Lanford Wilson’s favorite play. While the Pulitzer Prize-winning Talley’s Folly or Hot L Baltimore or Burn ...

Stageworks/Hudson

Savagely Funny

by John Rodat May 10, 2012

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  For a play with such an apocalyptic title, the setting and stakes of God of Carnage are mundane: Two couples, the Raleighs and the Novaks, meet in the Cobble Hill apartment of the latter, to ...

Capital Repertory Theatre

Soul to Soul

by James Yeara March 22, 2012

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The first song starts immediately once the lights fade into a blackout, and “Down on Me” reverberates like a call from the shores of the Hudson River far beyond the walls of the theater. Then ...

Capital Repertory Theatre

Big Men in Town

by B.A. Nilsson March 7, 2012

Jersey Boys
Forrest Theatre

  Frankie Valli’s Four Seasons were one of the few groups who withstood the seismic blast the Beatles wrought upon pop music in 1964. With No. 1 hits before, during, and after the height of the ...

Proctors

Dressed to Kill

by James Yeara February 16, 2012

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Wit’s not the thing you need around the house, And it’s no joy to have a bookish spouse. When I get married, you can bet your life My man will study nothing but his wife --Martine, Act 5, scene ...

Shakespeare & Company Elayne P. Bernstein Theatre

A Real Pisser

by John Rodat February 9, 2012

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  The musical Urinetown is a curious blend of earnest social commentary and ironic self-awareness. On the one hand, it scolds (if it doesn’t quite skewer) capitalistic-monopolistic command over essential resources; on the other, it satirizes ...

Lovable

by James Yeara February 1, 2012

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Rich in theatrical allusions and as pregnant with satire and humor as a Chekhov or a Shaw play, Wendy Wasserstein’s The Sisters Rosensweig ripples with laughter as it pricks the soul. This 1992 follow up ...

Capital Repertory Theatre

A Little Ooky

by Shawn Stone December 1, 2011

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You can’t kill cartoonist Charles Addams’ bizarre characters. You can bend them and twist them for various media, but their inner nature shines through. In its finest moments, the newish musical version of The Addams Family, ...

Better for This

by Kathryn Geurin November 22, 2011

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Man of La Mancha, the Tony Award-winning musical classic of Impossible Dreams currently on stage at Capital Repertory Theater, finds author-actor-tax-collector Miguel Cervantes and his manservant tossed in a dungeon by the Spanish Inquisition for ...

We Interrupt This Broadcast

by B.A. Nilsson October 13, 2011

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The infamous 1938 radio broadcast of The War of the Worlds exists in at least two versions. There’s the broadcast itself, which took place at particular time when politics and technology combined to explode what ...

Original Glazed

by James Yeara September 29, 2011

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The opening of Capital Repertory Theatre’s Superior Donuts is the perfect metaphor for the state America is in today. The production begins in the rundown interior of missing owner Arthur Przybyszewski’s (George Tynan Crowley) 60-year-old ...

Spark and Sputter

by James Yeara September 14, 2011

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The 21 scenes in Ismail Khalidi’s Tennis in Nablus show off Stageworks/Hudson at its best and worst. A new play having its East Coast premiere, Tennis in Nablus centers on Palestine, spring 1939. In some ...

Fearless

by B.A. Nilsson August 31, 2011

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A friend who works for the state described the office scene last Friday: an exodus of fellow workers fleeing to sandbag their homes in advance of Irene. Friday night I attended this Oldcastle Theatre production ...

Out of Time

by James Yeara August 24, 2011

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The leisure-class clash in Autres Temps, the Wharton Salon’s third annual production at the Mount, has been given an effectively timely update. First published in Century magazine exactly 100 years ago this August, Edith Wharton’s ...