Costa Mesa Theater Reviews
 


BWW Review: Jolly Good MARY POPPINS Flies Into Musical Theatre West BWW Review: Jolly Good MARY POPPINS Flies Into Musical Theatre West
by Michael Quintos - July 18, 2017

Disney/Cameron Mackintosh's stage adaptation of MARY POPPINS, the closing production of Musical Theatre West's 64th season is mostly jolly good fun. Full of palpable joy, wonderfully-performed songs, and smile-inducing moments, MTW's buoyant, crowd-pleasing production of the London-set musical conti... (more...)
BWW Review: Superb Performances Mark Beautifully Poetic THE PRIDE at The Wallis BWW Review: Superb Performances Mark Beautifully Poetic THE PRIDE at The Wallis
by Michael Quintos - June 26, 2017

Fittingly, as most of the world celebrates Gay Pride month, the Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts in Beverly Hills is presenting an absorbing, beautifully-poetic production of playwright Alexi Kaye Campbell's drama THE PRIDE, which continues its Los Angeles-area premiere through July 9... (more...)
BWW Review: Geffen Playhouse Sets Its Course for Love in CONSTELLATIONS BWW Review: Geffen Playhouse Sets Its Course for Love in CONSTELLATIONS
by Ellen Dostal - June 16, 2017

What a difference one decision makes. Turn a corner, say hello, say nothing, leave - even the smallest of choices has the power to alter our future. In CONSTELLATIONS, Nick Payne's exquisite play for two, now on stage at Geffen Playhouse, we watch the various stages of a couple's relationship play o... (more...)
BWW Review: UPSTAIRS - A MUSICAL TRAGEDY Debuts at Hollywood Fringe Festival BWW Review: UPSTAIRS - A MUSICAL TRAGEDY Debuts at Hollywood Fringe Festival
by Michael Quintos - June 08, 2017

Up until the 2016 Pulse nightclub shooting in Orlando, Florida a year ago, the deadliest known attack on a gay club in U.S. history happened more than 40 years before at the Up Stairs Lounge in New Orleans, Louisiana. The events prior to and following that deadly, still unsolved 1973 blaze make up t... (more...)
BWW Review: Stage Adaptation of THE BODYGUARD Makes OC Debut at Segerstrom Center BWW Review: Stage Adaptation of THE BODYGUARD Makes OC Debut at Segerstrom Center
by Michael Quintos - June 06, 2017

First, let's get this out of the way: while sitting through the national tour production of THE BODYGUARD---the stage adaptation of the late Whitney Houston's 1992 film that boasts the best-selling soundtrack of all time---one thing is absolutely for certain: chart-topping recording artist Deborah C... (more...)
BWW Review: East West Players presents Emotional NEXT TO NORMAL BWW Review: East West Players presents Emotional NEXT TO NORMAL
by Michael Quintos - May 30, 2017

To close out its historic 51st season, East West Players is presenting a bold and emotionally-packed production of the Pulitzer Prize and Tony Award-winning Broadway musical NEXT TO NORMAL, which continues performances at the David Henry Hwang Theater at the Union Center for the Arts through June 11... (more...)
BWW Review: 'S Wonderful AN AMERICAN IN PARIS Tour Enchants O.C. BWW Review: 'S Wonderful AN AMERICAN IN PARIS Tour Enchants O.C.
by Michael L. Quintos - May 01, 2017

Strikingly refined yet pleasingly grounded and altogether delightful, the gorgeous 2015 Broadway musical stage adaptation of AN AMERICAN IN PARIS---inspired by the Academy Award-winning 1951 movie musical of the same name---is a sweepingly lush, dance-centric production that combines the high-brow s... (more...)
BWW Review: La Mirada Theatre Revisits Classic Musical WEST SIDE STORY BWW Review: La Mirada Theatre Revisits Classic Musical WEST SIDE STORY
by Michael L. Quintos - April 30, 2017

Because it is arguably one the most beloved and critically-acclaimed musicals of all time, WEST SIDE STORY is revisited often by regional theaters across the country (and, frankly, the world). So it is no surprise that yet another large regional theater in Southern California is reviving this nostal... (more...)
BWW Review: Curiosity-Baiting New Play THE SIEGEL Brings Fresh Comedy to South Coast Repertory BWW Review: Curiosity-Baiting New Play THE SIEGEL Brings Fresh Comedy to South Coast Repertory
by Michael L. Quintos - April 17, 2017

Utilizing a sort of amusing, somewhat wacky plot that somehow works in a sustainably fresh, surprisingly plausible, and audaciously charming way, the world premiere production of playwright Michael Mitnick's thoroughly engaging new play THE SIEGEL---continuing at SCR in Costa Mesa through April 23--... (more...)
BWW Review: Theatrics Overpower Storytelling in ECT's ROMEO AND JULIET BWW Review: Theatrics Overpower Storytelling in ECT's ROMEO AND JULIET
by Ellen Dostal - April 12, 2017

Elysium Conservatory Theatre has thrown everything but the kitchen sink into its latest production of Shakespeare's ROMEO AND JULIET, the first in their brand new space in downtown San Pedro.... (more...)
BWW Review: It's Reigning Cats And Dogs In Palm Springs! Dezart Closes Its Season With A Very  Warm And Funny CHAPATTI! BWW Review: It's Reigning Cats And Dogs In Palm Springs! Dezart Closes Its Season With A Very Warm And Funny CHAPATTI!
by David Green - April 04, 2017

Dogs and cats reign supreme  - and, in fact, are the catalyst for all of the action  - in Christian O'Reilly's warm and intelligent comedy CHAPATTI, the final production in Dezart Performs rather remarkable ninth season in Palm Springs. Dezart Performs, a long time 'best kept secret' in Coachella Va... (more...)
BWW Review: Charming but Flawed FINDING NEVERLAND Searches for Magic BWW Review: Charming but Flawed FINDING NEVERLAND Searches for Magic
by Michael L. Quintos - March 27, 2017

A charming though perplexing adaptation of the 2004 film, FINDING NEVERLAND jets into too many erratic directions at any given moment and doesn't gel completely as a whole. And for all its gorgeous, visual splendor, it is surprisingly lacking in honest-to-goodness stage magic. The touring version of... (more...)
BWW Review: ABSINTHE L.A. Brings Sin City to Los Angeles, and It's an Instant Hit BWW Review: ABSINTHE L.A. Brings Sin City to Los Angeles, and It's an Instant Hit
by Ellen Dostal - March 24, 2017

It used to be true that what happens in Vegas stays in Vegas. But not anymore. For the next five weeks, LA audiences will get a taste of Sin City right here in our own backyard, thanks to Spiegelworld's in-your-face adult-only production, ABSINTHE LA.... (more...)
BWW Review: Not Man Apart's PARADISE LOST: RECLAIMING DESTINY Viscerally Recreates The Fall of Man BWW Review: Not Man Apart's PARADISE LOST: RECLAIMING DESTINY Viscerally Recreates The Fall of Man
by Ellen Dostal - March 15, 2017

There's not a chance in hell that an audience member could fail to be engaged in Not Man Apart Physical Theatre Ensemble's latest new work, PARADISE LOST: RECLAIMING DESTINY. The company has found a tantalizing niche with its athletically rich dance, movement & sensory exploration of stories that li... (more...)
BWW Review: Quirky Musical Farce GENTLEMAN'S GUIDE Kills at OC's Segerstrom Center BWW Review: Quirky Musical Farce GENTLEMAN'S GUIDE Kills at OC's Segerstrom Center
by Michael L. Quintos - March 03, 2017

Genuinely one of the funniest musical comedies to ever grace Broadway, A GENTLEMAN'S GUIDE TO LOVE AND MURDER easily proves quite early on---and pretty much throughout its two uproarious acts---why it won the 2014 Tony Award for Best Musical. Filled with hilarious sight gags, wickedly witty banter, ... (more...)
BWW Review: Chance Theater Amuses with New Video Game-Inspired Musical CLAUDIO QUEST BWW Review: Chance Theater Amuses with New Video Game-Inspired Musical CLAUDIO QUEST
by Michael L. Quintos - February 20, 2017

Video games get the musical comedy treatment in CLAUDIO QUEST, a clever new musical now having its West Coast Premiere performances at Orange County's Chance Theater through February 26 in Anaheim. Those familiar with the 8-bit characters of games like Super Mario Bros. will be amused by the adventu... (more...)
BWW Review: CIRCUS 1903 Recreates the Golden Age of Circus at the Hollywood Pantages BWW Review: CIRCUS 1903 Recreates the Golden Age of Circus at the Hollywood Pantages
by Ellen Dostal - February 16, 2017

If Dorothy in THE WONDERFUL WIZARD OF OZ had run away from home and found this traveling circus instead of Professor Marvel and his crystal ball, she might never have gotten swept up in a twister and landed in Munchkinland. Instead, she might have become part of a new family, the kind that traveled ... (more...)
BWW Review: Thrilling Production of MOBY DICK Swims into South Coast Repertory BWW Review: Thrilling Production of MOBY DICK Swims into South Coast Repertory
by Michael L. Quintos - February 13, 2017

Hands down, this incredibly absorbing stage adaptation of MOBY DICK is one of the most stunning and enthralling pieces of theater I have had the privilege of experiencing from a Southern California stage. Continuing through February 19 at Orange County's Tony Award-winning regional theater in Costa ... (more...)
BWW Review: Fun and Cheeky MATILDA - The Musical Amuses at Segerstrom Center BWW Review: Fun and Cheeky MATILDA - The Musical Amuses at Segerstrom Center
by Michael L. Quintos - January 27, 2017

MATILDA - THE MUSICAL, overall, is genuinely a fun time. It's a cheeky, kid-friendly (and, really, kid-catering) stage musical that has plenty for both kids and their parents to enjoy together. Featuring lively songs by Tim Michin and a witty, yet easily digestible book by Dennis Kelly, MATILDA - TH... (more...)
BWW Review: South Coast Repertory's Quirky Play THE ROOMMATE Shakes Things Up BWW Review: South Coast Repertory's Quirky Play THE ROOMMATE Shakes Things Up
by Michael L. Quintos - January 20, 2017

Quirky and surprisingly unexpected, playwright Jen Silverman explores a delightfully fresh and edgy new take on the formulaic 'opposite personalities that live together' paradigm in the new dark comedy THE ROOMMATE, now continuing its West Coast premiere performances at Orange County's Tony Award-wi... (more...)
BWW Review: ELF - THE MUSICAL Jingles into OC's Segerstrom Center BWW Review: ELF - THE MUSICAL Jingles into OC's Segerstrom Center
by Michael L. Quintos - December 26, 2016

Upon learning that part of Segerstrom Center for the Arts' holiday programming this season was to finally bring a national tour production of ELF - THE MUSICAL---the 2010 Broadway stage musical adaptation of the popular Will Ferrell holiday movie---to its stage, I was pretty ecstatic. For the most p... (more...)
BWW Review: Michael Arden Reinvigorates MERRILY WE ROLL ALONG at The Wallis BWW Review: Michael Arden Reinvigorates MERRILY WE ROLL ALONG at The Wallis
by Ellen Dostal - December 07, 2016

When MERRILY WE ROLL ALONG opened on Broadway in 1981, no one anticipated that it would be a flop. With a score by Stephen Sondheim and direction by Hal Prince, it should have been the next success in a series of highly successful collaborations by the two kings of musical theatre, following such ga... (more...)
BWW Review: NOT One Of My Favorite Things! THE SOUND OF MUSIC Misses The Emotional Mark At The McCallum BWW Review: NOT One Of My Favorite Things! THE SOUND OF MUSIC Misses The Emotional Mark At The McCallum
by David Green - November 23, 2016

Everyone deserves to see a great production of THE SOUND OF MUSIC in their lifetime. For those who attended the Jack O'Brien production last night at The McCallum, who have never seen one before, they are still waiting. It is a gorgeous, lavish production. The sets and costumes are beyond incredible... (more...)
BWW Review: Darren Criss Slays in Pantages Stop of HEDWIG AND THE ANGRY INCH Tour BWW Review: Darren Criss Slays in Pantages Stop of HEDWIG AND THE ANGRY INCH Tour
by Michael L. Quintos - November 15, 2016

In a theatrical touchdown for the Pantages Theatre in Hollywood, stage and screen star Darren Criss has agreed to reprise the notable title role he stepped into last year on Broadway: as Hedwig in the just-launched national tour of the rousing 2014 Tony Award-winning reboot of the glam rock musical ... (more...)
BWW Review: OC's Segerstrom Center Presents HARRY POTTER - IN CONCERT BWW Review: OC's Segerstrom Center Presents HARRY POTTER - IN CONCERT
by Michael L. Quintos - November 14, 2016

With the popularity of film screenings paired with live symphony orchestras at an all time high, I'm glad one of the many to get the treatment is Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone, the first installment of the 8-film movie franchise adapted from JK Rowling's worldwide best-selling books. What an... (more...)