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Chris Gibson

Chris Gibson Chris has been active in the local theatre scene for over 30 years. In addition to his acting work, he's also contributed as a director, writer and composer. Though, initially a film buff, he grew tired of the sanitized, PG-13 rated blockbusters that were being continually shoved down his throat by the studios. An opportunity to review theatre in St. Louis has grown exponentially with the sudden explosion of venues and talent in the region. He now finds himself obsessed with witnessing those precious, electric moments that can only happen live, on stage.
MOST POPULAR ARTICLES
LAST 30 DAYS

BWW Reviews: New Line Theatre's Shocking and Superb JERRY SPRINGER THE OPERAJERRY SPINGER THE OPERA
Posted: Mar. 11, 2015


BWW Reviews: COCA Theatre Company's Extraordinary THE LITTLE PRINCEBWW Reviews: COCA Theatre Company's Extraordinary THE LITTLE PRINCE
Posted: Mar. 11, 2015


BWW Reviews: Metro Theater Company's Outstanding AFFLICTED: DAUGHTERS OF SALEMBWW Reviews: Metro Theater's Outstanding AFFLICTED: DAUGHTERS OF SALEM
Posted: Mar. 18, 2015


BWW Reviews: The New Jewish Theatre's Compelling SIGHT UNSEENSIGHT UNSEEN
Posted: Mar. 27, 2015


BWW News: Chamber Music Society of St. Louis Hosts Benefit TonightBWW News: Chamber Music Society of St. Louis Hosts Benefit Tonight
Posted: Mar. 10, 2015


LAST 365 DAYS

BWW Reviews: The Muny's Kooky and Outstanding Production of THE ADDAMS FAMILYBWW Reviews: The Muny's Kooky & Terrific Production of THE ADDAMS FAMILY
Posted: Jul. 16, 2014


BWW Reviews: The St. Louis Actors' Studio Intriguing Presentation of the LABUTE NEW THEATER FESTIVAL (Part One)Review: St. Louis Actors' Studio's LABUTE NEW THEATER FESTIVAL (Part One)
Posted: Jul. 16, 2014


BWW Reviews: The MUNY Opens with a Dazzling Production of BILLY ELLIOTBWW Reviews: The MUNY Opens with a Dazzling Production of BILLY ELLIOT
Posted: Jun. 19, 2014


BWW Reviews: DIRTY DANCING at the Fabulous Fox TheatreBWW Reviews: DIRTY DANCING at the Fabulous Fox Theatre
Posted: Oct. 27, 2014


BWW Reviews: Chris Gibson's Best of 2014 in St. LouisBWW Reviews: Chris Gibson's Best of 2014 in St. Louis
Posted: Jan. 16, 2015


BWW Reviews: MILLION DOLLAR QUARTET Rocks the Fabulous Fox TheatreBWW Reviews: MILLION DOLLAR QUARTET Rocks the Fabulous Fox Theatre
Posted: Mar. 1, 2015


BWW Reviews: The Rep's Hilarious VANYA AND SONIA AND MASHA AND SPIKEBWW Reviews: The Rep's Hilarious VANYA AND SONIA AND MASHA AND SPIKE
April 1, 2015

Although a handful of playwrights have used elements from Anton Chekhov's canon of classics (such as Neil Simon's The Good Doctor), I can't think of any other writer who's displayed such ingenuity in incorporating bits and pieces from his work the way that Christopher Durang has in his play VANYA AND SONIA AND MASHA AND SPIKE. Referencing Uncle Vanya, Three Sisters, The Seagull, and The Cherry Orchard, Durang has put together a show that's so absurdly funny it hurts! It's not a parody of Chekhov, but instead neatly walks a tightrope that utilizes these traces in enjoyable and amusing ways that act to provide an intelligent depth that engages while it entertains. The Repertory Theatre of St. Louis closes their season on a gloriously high note that will make you wish their productions continued year round. Don't miss this hilarious show!
BWW Reviews: Funny and Touching BUYER & CELLAR by The Repertory Theatre of St. LouisBWW Reviews: Funny and Touching BUYER & CELLAR by The Repertory Theatre of St. Louis
April 1, 2015

Playwright Jonathan Tolins uses Barbra Streisand's book My Passion for Design as a jumping off point for his hilarious one man show BUYER & CELLAR. It's a fun-filled romp that fans of the lady with the magnificent voice, and questionable temperament, will find absolutely delightful. Even if you're not a fan, you'll enjoy this peek inside the peculiarities that are a part of this showbiz icon's lifestyle. The Repertory Theatre of St. Louis has fashioned a very enjoyable production that has been so popular that the run has been extended twice. See it for yourself and you'll know why. It's an amusing and often belly laugh inducing work that you should make every effort to check out!
BWW Reviews: The New Jewish Theatre's Compelling SIGHT UNSEENBWW Reviews: The New Jewish Theatre's Compelling SIGHT UNSEEN
March 27, 2015

Art is something that can be entirely subjective. Everyone can have their own opinion, with different people viewing a particular work and coming away with distinctly unique perspectives on its merit, or lack thereof. That's part of what makes SIGHT UNSEEN, by playwright Donald Margulies so intriguing. We're presented with a modern artist whose pieces are often categorized as obscene or shocking, although we're only allowed to glimpse an early canvas, so it's up to us to envision in our mind's eye the kind of product he has been creating that has presented him with such fame and success. And, like all people who work in the cultural arts fields, a muse is often instrumental in providing inspiration. When that muse is gone, does the work continue, and does it change? These elements are all examined quite thoughtfully in this play, and with an excellent cast and expert direction they come together in truly compelling fashion in The New Jewish Theatre's current production.
BWW Reviews: Metro Theater Company's Outstanding AFFLICTED: DAUGHTERS OF SALEMBWW Reviews: Metro Theater Company's Outstanding AFFLICTED: DAUGHTERS OF SALEM
March 18, 2015

Playwright Laurie Brooks examines the events that led to the infamous Salem Witch Trials from a different perspective with her intriguing and thought-provoking work, AFFLICTED Daughters of Salem. Unlike Arthur Miller's masterpiece, The Crucible, this play focuses our attention solely on the young girls who wound up making the accusations that started the wheels in motion. What we're privy to are the private thoughts and desires of a group of young girls who meet in the woods under the moonlight with the mystical slave Tituba. What comes through is their unhappiness with the way they feel their individuality is being repressed by their strict Puritan community. Since they can see nearby Quakers experiencing a great deal more freedom, they've come to resent the way of life they feel has been imposed upon them. Metro Theater Company's production at the Missouri History Museum (through March 22, 2015) is a taut and vivid presentation that ends with the audience being asked specific questions as to whether these young women should be held accountable for their acts. Their response may shock you. It will certainly provide food for thought.
BWW Reviews: COCA Theatre Company's Extraordinary THE LITTLE PRINCEBWW Reviews: COCA Theatre Company's Extraordinary THE LITTLE PRINCE
March 11, 2015

If you're looking for thoughtful entertainment that's suitable for children and adults then you should definitely check out the COCA Theatre Company's current production of THE LITTLE PRINCE based on the classic book by Antoine de Saint Exupery (music by Rick Cummins with book and lyrics by John Scoullar). Even if you've never read the story, you'll still be captivated by the whimsical, yet decidedly philosophical, journey of a little boy who travels the stars seeking answers while delivering certain truths. An excellent cast combines professional and non-professional actors who carry this material well. Best of all, there are stunning visual elements and musical numbers that act to enhance the overall experience.
BWW Reviews: New Line Theatre's Shocking and Superb JERRY SPRINGER THE OPERABWW Reviews: New Line Theatre's Shocking and Superb JERRY SPRINGER THE OPERA
March 11, 2015

I always know to expect the unexpected when I attend a production by New Line Theatre. Artistic Director Scott Miller has a gift for choosing shows that are consistently engaging, entertaining, and smartly cast and directed. Whether it's a revival of a classic or something of a more recent vintage, each receives the same special care and attention that makes the old seem new again, and makes you wonder why some of the newer material wasn't more successful during their initial runs. With JERRY SPRINGER THE OPERA, New Line brings us a St. Louis premier of a musical that has actually achieved a modicum of success (including a filmed staging in 2005), but it's not a choice that you're likely to find anywhere else in this region due to its adult nature and content. New Line is dedicated to taking those kind of risks. And, I'm so glad they are, because I love seeing presentations that push the envelope, especially when they're done so brilliantly. JERRY SPRINGER THE OPERA (music by Richard Thomas with book and lyrics by Stewart Lee and Thomas) delivers a unique, funny, tuneful, and completely tasteless parade of humanity that will win you over immediately. Prepare yourself to see opera from an entirely different perspective, in way that manages to stay true to the very tropes that define the genre, while turning them on their head with delicious blasphemy.
BWW News: Chamber Music Society of St. Louis Hosts Benefit TonightBWW News: Chamber Music Society of St. Louis Hosts Benefit Tonight
March 10, 2015

The Chamber Music Society of St. Louis announces SALUT D'AMOUR, a celebration at the Sheldon Concert Hall with David and Miran Halen to benefit the Chamber Society of St. Louis tonight, March 10, 2015.
BWW Reviews: MILLION DOLLAR QUARTET Rocks the Fabulous Fox TheatreBWW Reviews: MILLION DOLLAR QUARTET Rocks the Fabulous Fox Theatre
March 1, 2015

While it is certainly a fact that on December 4, 1956, Sun Records was host to an incredible gathering of talent (Elvis Presley, Carl Perkins, Johnny Cash and Jerry Lee Lewis), a listen to the actual recordings made that day were more along the lines of favorite folk and gospel numbers that the four shared in common. And though some of that does come through, the stage musical, MILLION DOLLAR QUARTET, utilizes this historic meeting as a jumping off point for an evening of truly classic rock and roll, with some other more reverent material sprinkled in for good measure. But honestly, a faithful recreation of the truth would be a bit of a letdown to most fans, so instead we're treated to a re-imagining that might bend the truth a bit (book by Colin Escott and Floyd Mutrux), but only in the quest to give audiences a glimpse at what could have been.
BWW Previews: Alexandra Ballet Performs GISELLE at the TOUHILL This WeekendBWW Previews: Alexandra Ballet Performs GISELLE at the TOUHILL This Weekend
February 21, 2015

St. Louis will celebrate ballet legend Miss Alexandra Zaharias this weekend, February 21-22 with A Sapphire Celebration and the masterpiece of the Romantic Era, GISELLE, at the Blanche M. Touhill Performing Arts Center. The Today, February 21st celebration will include cocktails and hors d'oeuvres with alumni followed by a World Premiere viewing of the documentary tribute: Miss A. The Gift of Grace: A Documentary before Alexandra Ballet Company's (ABC) endearing performance of GISELLE.
BWW Previews: Alexandra Ballet Company to Perform GISELLE at the TOUHILL, 2/21-22BWW Previews: Alexandra Ballet Company to Perform GISELLE at the TOUHILL, 2/21-22
February 19, 2015

St. Louis will celebrate ballet legend Miss Alexandra Zaharias the weekend of February 21-22 with A Sapphire Celebration and the masterpiece of the Romantic Era, GISELLE, at the Blanche M. Touhill Performing Arts Center. The Saturday, February 21st celebration will include cocktails and hors d'oeuvres with alumni followed by a World Premiere viewing of the documentary tribute: Miss A. The Gift of Grace: A Documentary before Alexandra Ballet Company's (ABC) endearing performance of GISELLE.
BWW Reviews: St. Louis Actors' Studio's Stunning Production of WHO'S AFRAID OF VIRGINIA WOOLF?BWW Reviews: St. Louis Actors' Studio's Stunning Production of WHO'S AFRAID OF VIRGINIA WOOLF?
February 19, 2015

Most people are familiar with WHO'S AFRAID OF VIRGINIA WOOLF?, undoubtedly playwright Edward Albee's masterpiece, from the film that starred Richard Burton and Elizabeth Taylor (released in 1966). But, seeing the play in person is a completely different experience, and one that's incredibly worthwhile, if harrowing at times. The St. Louis Actors' Studio is currently presenting an excellent production of this work that features strong performances and insightful direction. You'll forget all about the movie once you experience this show in the flesh.
BWW Reviews: Outstanding Production of THE WINSLOW BOY by The Repertory Theatre of St. LouisBWW Reviews: Outstanding Production of THE WINSLOW BOY by The Repertory Theatre of St. Louis
February 17, 2015

The Repertory Theatre of St. Louis' artistic director, Steven Woolf, always has a knack for finding a classic, sometimes a neglected one, to present each season. This year it's Terence Rattigan's revered play THE WINSLOW BOY, which some will remember from various revivals and film versions (1948 & 1999), and which stands out as a dramatic piece fraught with injustice. It's a story, based on fact, that is still as relevant today as it was when it was written. A splendid cast and keenly sharpened direction combine to provide a very compelling piece of theatre.
BWW News: Chamber Music Society of St. Louis Announces Benefit on 3/10BWW News: Chamber Music Society of St. Louis Announces Benefit on 3/10
February 13, 2015

The Chamber Music Society of St. Louis announces SALUT D'AMOUR, a celebration at the Sheldon Concert Hall with David and Miran Halen to benefit the Chamber Society of St. Louis on March 10, 2015.
BWW Reviews: Entertaining New Work WHITE TO GRAY at Mustard Seed TheatreBWW Reviews: Entertaining New Work WHITE TO GRAY at Mustard Seed Theatre
February 12, 2015

Rob Maesaka, a St. Louis playwright, receives the opportunity to have one of his works premiered with Mustard Seed Theatre's presentation of his play, WHITE TO GRAY. It's an engaging piece of theatre that tells an interesting story that's dramatic and even occasionally funny at times. Judging a new play can sometimes be a challenge because it's unique; there's never been a production for the viewer to gauge it against. But for viewers and critics alike, that's the fun part of seeing something fresh. We have no expectations going in, so we're being engaged by the actors and playwright for the first time. On the whole, I would say this is an entertaining show that features a number of good performances, and it covers a period of time that is ripe with dramatic possibilities that the writer explores. Maesaka's play, and Mustard Seed's production of it is definitely worthy of your time and attention.
BWW Reviews: Stray Dog Theatre's Hilarious GOD OF CARNAGEBWW Reviews: Stray Dog Theatre's Hilarious GOD OF CARNAGE
February 11, 2015

I first saw playwright Yasmina Reza's play, GOD OF CARNAGE, at the Repertory Theatre of St. Louis before catching Roman Polanski's film adaptation (screenplay by Reza), which was simply called Carnage. It's an undeniably strong story that tells us a lot about how people behave, especially the feelings that we keep buried beneath the surface. Simply put, it's a comedy of manners that utilizes an unfortunate occurrence to bring together two sets of parents for a civilized discussion about the matter. But, once the alcohol begins to flow emotions and points of view start to skew in interesting directions that lift the veneer of civility. Stray Dog Theatre has put together an entertaining production of this fine work (translation by Christopher Hampton) that never fails to engage. A thoroughly game cast and sharp direction combine to produce superb theatre.
BWW Reviews: Upstream Theater's Remarkable BASHIR LAZHARBWW Reviews: Upstream Theater's Remarkable BASHIR LAZHAR
February 4, 2015

BASHIR LAZHAR, by Evelyne De La Cheneliere (translated into English by Morwyn Brebner) tells a fascinating story that will surely touch your heart, while making you think as well. Though primarily a one-man show (although there is a cameo appearance), this production benefits, as a lot of Upstream Theater shows have previously, from the presence of musician Farshid Soltanshahi. The combination of sensitive direction, an excellent portrayal, and an underscoring that communicates the mood and atmosphere of each scene, provideS the audience with a full sensory experience that has an almost cinematic, and I mean that in the best possible way, quality. This presentation is not to be missed; it's simply superlative theater, from a company that always gives its audience an entertaining and enlightening experience time after time.
BWW News: St. Louis Theatre Circle Announces Nominees for 2014BWW News: St. Louis Theatre Circle Announces Nominees for 2014
February 3, 2015

New Line Theatre's production of BONNIE & CLYDE tied with Stages St. Louis' rendition of HOW TO SUCCEED IN BUSINESS WITHOUT REALLY TRYING with nine nominations apiece for the St. Louis Theater Circle Awards to lead nominations for all shows produced by local professional theater companies in 2014.
BWW Reviews: The Repertory Theatre of St. Louis's Masterful Production of SAFE HOUSEBWW Reviews: The Repertory Theatre of St. Louis's Masterful Production of SAFE HOUSE
January 27, 2015

America has a rich history, some of which, of course, we'd all prefer to forget. But, to ignore them can just lead to repeating them, and we all should know better than that by now. However, it's important that we continue to mine the events of the past in order to enlighten and provoke discussion. This is the very thing that Keith Josef Adkins' brilliant work SAFE HOUSE does with a considerable amount of power and conviction. It's a story set in Kentucky in 1843, when slavery was still very much a resident evil that ruled the land, even though there were African Americans who were freeborn. The Repertory Theatre of St. Louis is currently presenting this new play, and as they always seem to have a knack for doing, it's done in a completely compelling and infinitely memorable fashion that makes for a truly moving and enriching experience.
BWW Reviews: The New Jewish Theatre's Spellbinding IMAGINING  MADOFFBWW Reviews: The New Jewish Theatre's Spellbinding IMAGINING MADOFF
January 27, 2015

There's no doubt in my mind that people who are familiar with the despicable actions of Bernie Madoff will never find it in their hearts to forgive the way he bilked so many trusting and innocent victims out of their life savings with his nefarious Ponzi schemes. And yet, with playwright Deborah Margolin's work, IMAGINING MADOFF, we're given an opportunity to examine in detail the man who concocted this plan. It's not that you feel any empathy or understanding for his motives, but that you see him as a real person, and not just another criminal elevated by the media due to his notorious actions. It's a really engaging and thought-provoking piece of theatre that exemplifies the kind of material that the New Jewish Theatre has become so well known for, and it's one that should not be missed at all costs.
BWW Reviews: Lovely Production of RODGERS + HAMMERSTEIN'S CINDERELLA at the Fabulous FoxBWW Reviews: Lovely Production of RODGERS + HAMMERSTEIN'S CINDERELLA at the Fabulous Fox
January 26, 2015

A fairytale is brought to its full fruition on the stage of the Fabulous Fox Theatre with their current presentation of RODGERS + HAMMERSTEIN'S CINDERELLA. It's a lovely experience that makes the most of the large stage, filling it with songs and beautiful surroundings fit such a lavishly told tale. Originally conceived and broadcast as a musical for television during the late 1950's and starring Julie Andrews in the title role, this work has been altered many times over the years with musical numbers added and subtracted, and the plot rejiggered as well (book by Douglas Carter Beane) to make it have a more political bent, at least where Cinderella's feelings toward how the kingdom is being are concerned. But, here we have a production that's suitable for children of all ages. In other words, perfect family entertainment.


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