Regional Roundup: Top New Features This Week Around Our Broadway World - 3/24; SPRING AWAKENING in Maine, A RAISIN IN THE SUN in Charlotte and More!
BroadwayWorld presents a comprehensive weekly roundup of regional stories around our Broadway World, which include videos, editor spotlights, regional reviews and more. This week, we feature SPRING AWAKENING in Maine, A RAISIN IN THE SUN in Charlotte, and BUS STOP in Denver, just to name a few. Check out our top features below!
1. Maine: Editor Carla Maria Verdino-Süllwold reviews SPRING AWAKENING at Lyric Music Theater. She says, "SPRING AWAKENING is very much an ensemble work, and Lyric Music Theater has put together not only a fine cast, but also an excellent creative and production team. Director Jamie Lupien Swenson knows how to build the tension and savor the poignant moments, and she elicits the kind of commitment from her actors that makes this production distinguished." Read more here.
2. New Jersey: New Editor Jaclyn Layman interviews Matthew J. Taylor, who plays Julian Marsh in 42ND STREET at Mayo Performing Arts Center. Taylor says, "This production is a mildly reimagined but very similar to the original Broadway production from the early 2000's directed by Mark Bramble with original choreography by Randy Skinner. When the show launched 2 years ago Mark and Randy were the primary creatives and this time around Adam Kidd, Mark's assistant, jumped in to continue Mark's work while he is busy in the West End putting the production together. So you're going to see a lot of the same sets, all the same great characters and songs, and a little bit of Adam's flavor. It's a really great take on a really classic piece." Read the full interview here.
3. Cincinnati, OH: Editor Abby Rowold reviews JANE EYRE at Cincinnati Playhouse In The Park. She says, "The horror in this story is no longer the "things that go bump in the night"; it is the idea of being locked away for saying what you think, and for sleeping with whomever you want. Bertha is always there. First trapped in the little red room, staring at the audience. She is quiet for long periods until we almost forget about her, and then she bursts forward again. Teale is not hiding her away to be a surprise at the end. She keeps her in full view for the entire first act. As Jane begins to actually feel like Rochester's equal, the madwoman (who may actually be Jane) begins to move more freely on the stage. She literally lights up candle after candle, as Jane lights figurative candles, making the conflagration inevitable." Read more here.
4. Charlotte, NC: Editor Perry Tannenbaum reviews A RAISIN IN THE SUN at Theatre Charlotte. He says, "El Bey is a stunning actress for her age (a senior at Northwest School of the Arts), but she gets plenty to play off of. Not only is there rawness and seething fury from Gamble - as a sibling, a son, and a husband - there is also charming equipoise and bemused detachment from Gerard Hazelton as Asagai, most pointedly when he chides Beneatha for her assimilationist dress and her straightened hair." Read more here.
5. Ft. Lauderdale, FL: Editor Trevor Durham reviews Slow Burn's BIG RIVER. He says, "wain tale of Huckleberry and Jim, but focuses his energy on the beautiful Roger Miller score. His cast is varied, some returning Slow Burn performers with new faces taking the leads- all work well with his long time musical director Emmanuel Schvartzman, to present the score that captivated him so many years ago. The Southern drawls and gritty feel from each actor meshes into cascading musical numbers, transforming South Florida into the Southern Antebellum with hints of twang, soul, gospel, and folk." Read more here.
6. Denver, CO: Editor Chris Arneson reviews BUS STOP at Arvada Center. He says, "But what makes Bus Stop captivating is its character work, brought to an enthralling level with top-notch performances by the Arvada Center's Black Box Repertory Company. Van Fleet's Cherie is performed magnetically, balancing an endearing disposition with a confused heart. She's a little trashy, but she means well. Bo is played by Scrutchins with a similar approach. As a male, I feel like I naturally brush aside his anger issues when he shows his heart...but if I were female, I think I'd hate him no matter what. Morgan's Virgil is grounded and gentle, keeping Bo at bay." Read more here.
7. Adelaide, AU: Editor Brodie Paparella reviews THE CURIOSITY EXPERIMENT at Carclew. He says, "The performers made very effective use of sound, manipulating volume, mixing voices, using recorded tracks and everyday noises to weave a rich pool the audience floundered in, petrified by the tale being told. A great use of thriller tropes to create a genuinely creepy experience worth submitting your senses to." Read more here.
National Tour Highlight:
8. Madison Editor Scott Rawson reviews CABARET at The Overture Center. He says, "The production was masterfully done. The orchestra, situated strategically on the second floor of the Kit Kat Klub, are also the actors as they are woven into the day to day action. The vocals, choreography and acting were all as solid as one would expect form a Broadway touring company." Read more here.
9. Books. Editor Bonnie Lynn Wagner reviews A COURT OF THORNS AND ROSES by Sarah J. Maas. She says, "Even though this is the first in a series, it reads as a stand-alone and readers are left with warm fuzzies upon finishing. Feyre's journey continues, and the second book, A COURT OF MIST AND FURY, *does* have a crazy cliffhanger, but this first book is just a delicious fairy tale!" Read more here.
10. Rob Bogin, Denver. Rob Bogin's whole family is into theater, and he's recently appeared as George (and Maggie Thatcher!) in Billy Elliott and Atticus Finch in To Kill a Mockingbird with his two boys and his wife. Being onstage interacting with his kids is a dream come true!
With his background in television reporting, Rob creates video packages for BWW about upcoming professional and community theater shows, which feature interviews with the actors and directors. He's the prototypical one man band, shooting the stories on his Sony XDCAM, creating the questions for the actors, doing the interviews, writing the story and then voicing the narration for the final package. Rob has written a nationally syndicated column and edited textbooks in the past as well.
Why does Rob enjoy writing for BroadwayWorld? He says, "Working for BWW is a fun and unique way to support theater in the Denver area, while being a great creative outlet. My main day (and night) job is working in hospital intensive care units as a critical care physician."
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