Category Archives: Theatre

Theatre Review: ‘Trevor’ at 1st Stage

Living in Connecticut eight years ago when a chimp being kept as a pet ripped the face off a neighbor, it was tough to see anything but stark horror in the attack. But there was a wealth of absurdity in the case of Travis, who appeared in TV commercials, occasionally drove the car and liked [...]

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Review: Spooky Action’s ‘The River’

The theater space at the Spooky Action Theatre is so intimate you immediately feel you’re in the tiny cabin where all its action in Jez Butterworth’s play “The River” takes place. Not only do you watch the man rhapsodize about sea trout fly fishing on a moonless night from this old family-owned cabin, and witness [...]

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From Russia, Ballet’s Humpbacked Horse

If the current state of U.S. relations with Russia seems dark and murky, it’s opposite that in the Mariinsky Ballet’s current offering at the Kennedy Center. “The Little Humpbacked Horse” is sunny and simple, light-hearted and soaring. Presented by Russia’s oldest company, formed decades before the United States, there’s nothing heavy about the production at all, [...]

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Review: ‘The Second Shepherds’ Play’

Falstaff had the girth and beard to make for a decent Santa, but Shakespeare never wrote anything close to a Christmas play. Which might pose a problem for Folger Shakespeare Library hoping to present some holiday fare. But they’ve gotten hold of another text from the middle ages that involves the shepherds who followed the [...]

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Stage Review: New Austen Holiday Sequel

When every theater company feels compelled to do something Christmas-themed come December, it can lead to either overusing certain titles or creating fluffy trifles. One great addition to regional theaters, though, is the literate and witty “Miss Bennet: Christmas at Pemberley” by Lauren Gunderson and Margot Melcon. This season alone, it’s playing in Chicago, Milwaukee [...]

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Cincinnati Ballet Brings its ‘Nutcracker’

As expected this time of year as TV ads, wreaths and shopping center crowds, “The Nutcracker” has by now gone beyond being merely a beloved holiday tradition to possibly being the country’s most performed work of any type — dance, music or theater. Multiple productions of it appear in dozens of cities year after year [...]

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Stage Review: New Dimension for ‘Tommy’

“Tommy,” the groundbreaking 1969 set by the Who that it dubbed a rock opera, finds a new dimension in the Open Circle Theatre production in Silver Spring. While there’s still much puzzling in the plot of the piece by Pete Townshend, adapted and somewhat watered-down for Broadway in the mid-90s as “The Who’s Tommy,” the [...]

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Stage Review: ‘Six Degrees,’ 26 Years Later

More than 25 years after it was first staged, “Six Degrees of Separation,” John Guare’s sly tale of a young con man captivating and ultimately fooling an upper East Side couple, seems almost like a period piece. These days, anybody who’d show up, bloodied, claiming to be a college friend of their kids, and, more [...]

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Ballet: Christopher Wheeldon’s ‘Cinderella’

Before ballet stages everywhere become crowded with nutcrackers and their gala holiday accouterments, there is still time for other sturdy folk tales of enchantment set to Russian music and popular with children with which to spin off imaginative ballets. “Cinderella” is such a tale that has survived centuries, cultural variations, a dominating Disney version and [...]

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Stage Review: ‘Kiss’ at Woolly Mammoth

I wish you could see “Kiss” at Woolly Mammoth Theatre the way I did: Without a lot of advance insight, no prior research and only the vague knowledge it was an adaptation of a foreign play. That explained what appeared to be a light romantic play of star-crossed partners, with somewhat stilted lines and melodramatic [...]

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