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- The Tempest at Chicago Shakes Nov 9
2015, 01:52:36 AM
For me, the main reason to see the show was the always-astounding Larry Yando in the role of Prospero. The magic was fun and usually well-integrated, but the music and the Pilobolus choreography felt like they came from a different world. I also wished that the songs set some of Shakespeare's text to music instead of writing new lyrics--there's so much to pull from, and what they came up with really stuck out. I was also very unimpressed with the young actress playing Miranda. I could
- Ear Piece For Lines Nov 7
2015, 01:24:27 AM
Fascinating to see such negative sentiment here. I remember five years ago, when Elaine Stritch did A Little Night Music, she refused to have an earpiece because of her dignity, which led to numerous long, awkward pauses as she tried to recall her lines. People then seemed to say that she should have sucked it up and used an earpiece like Angela Lansbury, who originated the role in that revival, did.
Also, I don't understand why so many people here
- A View From The Bridge Previews Oct 23
2015, 12:41:18 AM
Scarywarhol said: "Saw the NT Live broadcast of this and feel so alone. I thought it was gimmicky, tacky, and over-wrought. The production, that is--good performances. I've seen this whole bag of tricks used so many times. "
You are not alone. I also saw the broadcast and thought it was alternately extremely irritating and laughably bad. I love the play, and I think that the 2010 revival really captured what is so great about the piece. This production is so fille
- The Humans Oct 1
2015, 02:49:51 AM
The play was extremely well-received in its world premiere in Chicago last year, directed by the (tragically) recently deceased PJ Paparelli. As a big fan of Karam's writing, and this play in particular, I am glad to hear your positive reactions. I love how Karam makes an essentially plotless story so compelling by weaving in a building sense of suspense into the proceedings. The characters he crafts are so believable, relatable, and lovable. I consider Karam to be among the ver
- Sweet Bird Of Youth Revival? Sep 19
2015, 05:47:51 PM
^ There were massive and lengthy scene changes occurring in the intermissions of that production. I assume those dictated where they placed the intermissions.
- Sweet Bird Of Youth Revival? Sep 17
2015, 03:09:05 PM
EricMontreal22, that was indeed the case with Cromer's production. The first act was left in its original state, but the second act consisted of just the first scene of act two in the published script, relocated from the cocktail lounge to (if I am remembering correctly) a pier at or near the Finley residence. The third act of Cromer's production consisted of the second scene of act two and the entirety of the third act in the published script. The only thing that didn't work for
- Sweet Bird Of Youth Revival? Sep 17
2015, 02:49:20 AM
To clarify for Mr Roxy, a production was announced for Broadway a few years back with David Cromer set to direct Nicole Kidman and James Franco in the lead roles. That production fell through, but Cromer was able to stage his production in Chicago with Diane Lane and Finn Wittrock in those roles. The production was very well-received and sold remarkably well, but no transfer occurred. I am glad it worked out the way it did, as Lane and Wittrock were better than I could imagine Kidman and
- Bare Sep 2
2015, 08:34:19 PM
LYLS3637 said: "It's very successful in a few areas. It was "It Gets Better" before there was "It Gets Better." "
Is there really anything in the show that suggests that things get any better? It's a depressing two hours with an even more depressing conclusion.
- Crucible Revival Aug 6
2015, 06:53:49 PM
I'm not much of a fan of Van Hove's work, but everything else about this so excites me. I don't mind if Proctor is significantly younger than he historically was as long as it makes sense within the world created onstage. It's historical fiction; I don't mind if some details are fudged. But the most exciting thing about this, for me, is Phillip Glass's score. I am very much looking forward to hearing thoughts on what will probably be a very divisive production.
- The most frequently produced high school plays and musicals- by decade (fascinating list!) Aug 1
2015, 06:12:59 AM
I know that West Side Story is generally understood to be a staple of high school drama programs, but I have never actually known anyone whose high school did the show. It requires a lot of men with dance ability, and so few high schools have that.
It's nice to see lots of very strong shows that can really inspire a love of theatre on this list. However, seeing favorites of mine produced so commonly also makes me very nervous--as Gaveston said, there's nothing like a
- Who Deserves a Broadway House Named After Them? Jul 29
2015, 05:05:43 AM
Tennessee Williams, without a doubt. Edward Albee, Thornton Wilder, Lillian Hellman--all deserving names.
- Stop dressing like crap! Jul 28
2015, 10:02:54 PM
I do try to dress decently when I see plays, but I never care what fellow patrons wear--I'm there to watch the show, not my fellow audience members. Dress codes at performances recall the pre-Wagnerian days when attending a performance was as much a social event as it was entertainment. By turning off our phones, we are agreeing that we only care about what is happening on stage.
When Vincintelli (a person I continually grow to loathe with each word she says) closes
- Evita 2006/2012 Revival Jul 18
2015, 06:13:32 PM
I saw her alternate, Christina DeCicco, in the role, and i thought she was wonderful. Ricky Martin was, as everyone keeps repeating, very underwhelming as Che. I loved this production's staging and design for its willingness to part from the cartoonish Hal Prince staging that has been reproduced for decades. This was the first production of Evita I have seen in which it seemed that someone actually realized that the show is set in Argentina. The orchestrations sounded more Latin and the
- Angela Lansbury in Driving Miss Daisy on PBS Jul 18
2015, 05:48:39 PM
I have to disagree with you. I was disappointed with this production, but having seen what I thought was a wonderful production of the play not quite two years ago, I am tempted to say the fault lies in this production and its performers. I could not believe Angela Lansbury as southern or Jewish, and I frequently had trouble understanding what James Earl Jones was saying. They played their scenes in a very slow, almost melodramatic manner that really didn't work for me. I was never able to co
- The Wild Party Opens This Week Jul 16
2015, 02:53:03 AM
I'm disappointed to hear that those two songs that really, really work (and you can't say that about much of the score) are gone, and nobody has mentioned anything about further development of the minor characters. Of course, on Lippa's last musical, Big Fish, he cut a song that worked really well ("The River Between Us") and left an embarrassingly awkward clunker untouched ("Showdown," anyone?).
I imagined that Sutton would be miscast, and the video clips (which, gra
- Amy Morton back to Broadway Jul 10
2015, 05:21:54 PM
She's a regular on Chicago PD, so that would kind of get in the way. She did just direct a play at the Atlantic Theatre Company, though, and she is directing a reading of a new play at Steppenwolf this summer.
- So What Musicals Should Jake Gyllenhaal Do? Jul 3
2015, 02:12:38 AM
I would love to see him take a stab at Bobby (whatever happened to that gay Company? Did anything come of that reading?) or maybe Guido Contini. I would see him do Floyd Collins, as well. In addition to the previously mentioned roles, of course.
- The Wild Party: Lippa vs LaChiusa Jul 3
2015, 01:59:47 AM
A year ago, I was almost completely unfamiliar with both versions, but now I have been lucky enough to see a production of each version in recent months. I much prefer LaChiusa's version. The score is grounded in the period much more, and it's a dream for a music geek like me. All the mixed meter, dissonant harmonies, and that one crazy moment with eight completely different vocal lines layered on top of each other... it really makes Lippa's score seem tame by comparison. Also, stru
- SPEECH AND DEBATE by Stephen Karam to be filmed in Mississippi? Jul 1
2015, 10:03:15 PM
Is this for the film adaptation that was announced way back when the play was running off-Broadway, which we have heard nothing about in the past seven or eight years? If this is actually going forward, I would be thrilled. I think Karam is one of our finest young playwrights, and Speech & Debate would make a wonderful indie comedy.
- Your favorite shows you've seen in 2015 so far Jul 1
2015, 09:56:48 PM
I have seen 62 shows so far this year (including student productions). Here are my top ten (all in Chicago)
1. Mr. Burns (Theater Wit)
2. Balm in Gilead (Griffin Theatre)
3. The Hammer Trinity (House Theatre)
4. The Diary of Anne Frank (Writers Theatre)
5. Sondheim on Sondheim (Porchlight Music Theatre)
6. Airline Highway (Steppenwolf)