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BWW Review: SPT's Thoughtful GRAND CONCOURSE Crackles with Stunning Performances BWW Review: SPT's Thoughtful GRAND CONCOURSE Crackles with Stunning Performances
by Jay Irwin - May 21, 2017

It's always the quiet ones you have to look out for. That sentiment works well for people but in this case also for a certain theater, Seattle Public Theater. They don't put on the biggest, most well-known shows and they're not always in the foreground of people's thoughts for "must go" theater bu... (more...)
BWW Review: GUTENBERG! THE MUSICAL! Slays with Historical Fiction BWW Review: GUTENBERG! THE MUSICAL! Slays with Historical Fiction
by Jay Irwin - May 13, 2017

Attention all you Broadway producers out there … or even you wanna-be producers … or just people who love to laugh, you'll want to head on down to the Jewelbox Theater at the Rendezvous to catch two comedy savants educate us with some historical fiction with "Gutenberg! The Musical!" But maybe don'... (more...)
BWW Review: Village Has Your DREAMGIRLS, Boys.  And They'll Make You Happy! BWW Review: Village Has Your DREAMGIRLS, Boys. And They'll Make You Happy!
by Jay Irwin - May 12, 2017

Back in the day when I was a mere fledgling musical theater geek I was introduced to the show 'Dreamgirls'. You might say this was my gateway cast album that put me on the path toward the musical addict I am today as I practically wore out the CD. So you'll understand if I'm a little picky about t... (more...)
BWW Review: Sweepingly Beautiful AN AMERICAN IN PARIS at Paramount BWW Review: Sweepingly Beautiful AN AMERICAN IN PARIS at Paramount
by Jay Irwin - May 10, 2017

'An American in Paris' is one of those films that, when you mention it, people who have seen it give a contented little sigh. And those people, and many more, can add the stage version to give them that warm fuzzy feeling as the tour, currently playing at the Paramount, brings in much of the same m... (more...)
BWW Review: Reboot Theater's PRIVATE LIVES Very Witty, Slightly Wonky BWW Review: Reboot Theater's PRIVATE LIVES Very Witty, Slightly Wonky
by Amelia Reynolds - May 09, 2017

Elyot (Kit Lascher) and Sybil (Alysha Curry) are on honeymoon in the French Riviera. It's 1930. They're sipping cocktails, calling each other 'dahling' in that quintessential, leftover-from-Britain way of speaking. Sybil has already mentioned Elyot's ex wife, Amanda, but Elyot reassures Sybil that s... (more...)
BWW Review: Seattle Shakes Musical MIDSUMMER Hits Several Bad Notes BWW Review: Seattle Shakes Musical MIDSUMMER Hits Several Bad Notes
by Jay Irwin - May 07, 2017

I've never been a fan of transplanting classic works such as Shakespeare to "new and exciting" locales and time periods but I have seen it work as long as the adaptation enhances the existing story somehow or at the very least makes sense with the story. Unfortunately, Seattle Shakespeare Company's... (more...)
BWW Review: Seattle Children's Theatre's Gala Sparkles with Kelli O'Hara BWW Review: Seattle Children's Theatre's Gala Sparkles with Kelli O'Hara
by Jay Irwin - May 06, 2017

Last night musical theatre nerds around the Seattle area may have felt a disturbance in the force as if there was a diva among us. Well, if you did you can take solace in that you were right however unless you were there you certainly missed out as Broadway's Kelli O'Hara killed it during her perfo... (more...)
BWW Review: WET's CHERDONNA'S DOLL'S HOUSE Beats the Joke to Death then Quits BWW Review: WET's CHERDONNA'S DOLL'S HOUSE Beats the Joke to Death then Quits
by Jay Irwin - April 29, 2017

If you're going to riff on a classic, then have something to add to the conversation. Sometimes it works beautifully such as the amazing 'Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead' or the current critically acclaimed Broadway hit 'A Doll's House, Part 2'. But without something new to add any kind of p... (more...)
BWW Review: Powerful and Poignant ODE at West of Lenin BWW Review: Powerful and Poignant ODE at West of Lenin
by Jay Irwin - April 28, 2017

You may remember, Dear Readers, my lack of affinity for performance art. I usually just find it confusing and lacking much meaning, which ultimately makes me feel like I'm just not smart enough to get what they're trying to convey. So with that in mind you'll understand how well crafted Nike Imoru... (more...)
BWW Review: Café Nordo's 'Twin Peaks' Homage LOST FALLS Bites Off More Than It Can Chew BWW Review: Café Nordo's 'Twin Peaks' Homage LOST FALLS Bites Off More Than It Can Chew
by Amelia Reynolds - April 26, 2017

Something as stylized as 'Twin Peaks' is really difficult to emulate, even in the form of homage. Cafe Nordo's 'Lost Falls' certainly looks the part: a rustic, log hotel from yesteryear populated by a sultry, young femme fatale, a woman with an imaginary friend, an unwaveringly optimistic detective ... (more...)
BWW Review: Gripping FROZEN at ArtsWest Feels Like a Documentary at Times BWW Review: Gripping FROZEN at ArtsWest Feels Like a Documentary at Times
by Jay Irwin - April 23, 2017

First off, Dear Readers, let me explain that you will see no singing Ice Princesses or wacky snowmen in this show. This particular play called "Frozen", currently playing at ArtsWest, is about as far away from the Disney movie as it could be considering it deals with serial killers. And while the ... (more...)
BWW Review: 5th Avenue's THE SECRET GARDEN Has the Talent But Not the Feels BWW Review: 5th Avenue's THE SECRET GARDEN Has the Talent But Not the Feels
by Jay Irwin - April 22, 2017

Way back in 1991 a young fledgling theater geek saw a performance from the new musical "The Secret Garden" by Marsha Norman and Lucy Simon on the Tony awards and he became obsessed with it. He listened to the cast album over and over and fell completely in love with it when he saw the first nationa... (more...)
BWW Review: Seattle Rep's HERE LIES LOVE Brings Down the House ... Literally BWW Review: Seattle Rep's HERE LIES LOVE Brings Down the House ... Literally
by Jay Irwin - April 21, 2017

A few years back on one of my trips to New York, pretty much anyone I talked to about what shows I was seeing was aghast that I wasn't seeing 'Here Lies Love' Off-Broadway. And to each of them I'd say, 'a musical about Imelda Marcos written by David Byrne and Fatboy Slim? No thanks, not my thing.'... (more...)
BWW Review: SCT's NADESHIKO - Two Stories with Not Much to Say BWW Review: SCT's NADESHIKO - Two Stories with Not Much to Say
by Jay Irwin - April 16, 2017

In Keiko Green's 'Nadeshiko', currently getting its world premiere from Sound Theatre Company, there are two stories happening on the stage. Only one of the stories is very well fleshed out and only one is very interesting and unfortunately they're not the same story. With stiff and stilted dialog... (more...)
BWW Review: Seattle Musical Theatre's KISS ME, KATE Not Tongue-In-Cheek Enough BWW Review: Seattle Musical Theatre's KISS ME, KATE Not Tongue-In-Cheek Enough
by Amelia Reynolds - April 11, 2017

If you have to preface your show with the acknowledgement of misogyny, is showcasing the choreography and vocal talent worth putting on that show?... (more...)
BWW Review: A Cerebral Tribute to Freaky, Fringe Theatre with Copious Love's THE FOG MACHINE PLAY BWW Review: A Cerebral Tribute to Freaky, Fringe Theatre with Copious Love's THE FOG MACHINE PLAY
by Amelia Reynolds - April 04, 2017

What an inside joke this one was! 'The Fog Machine Play' is a very smart toast to Seattle fringe theatre written and produced by a Seattle fringe theatre company, Copious Love Productions.... (more...)
BWW Review: MURDER FOR TWO at ACT Slays with Laughs BWW Review: MURDER FOR TWO at ACT Slays with Laughs
by Jay Irwin - March 31, 2017

Expect to be killed when you attend the current production of "Murder for Two" at ACT Theatre in conjunction with The 5th Avenue Theatre. You won't be shot or stabbed but you certainly run the risk of busting a gut, passing out from a lack of oxygen, or just generally dying of laughter largely due t... (more...)
BWW Review: Fantastic Z's BAD PANDA Examines Alternative Families BWW Review: Fantastic Z's BAD PANDA Examines Alternative Families
by Jay Irwin - March 27, 2017

In this ever-changing society of ours it's nice to see shows that take a look at different kinds of love and families. Such is the case with Megan Gogerty's "Bad Panda" currently being offered from Fantastic Z Theatre. And while at times the script felt a bit heavy handed and the production lacked... (more...)
BWW Review: Seattle Public's GROUNDED Soars into the Blue BWW Review: Seattle Public's GROUNDED Soars into the Blue
by Jay Irwin - March 27, 2017

Anytime a theater does a one person show it's a risky proposition. You, of course, need the right piece. You need a good set that doesn't detract from the lone performer on stage. You need good direction of that performer so it doesn't feel too static. And most importantly, you need a performer ... (more...)
BWW Review: A PROPER PLACE at Village Shipwrecks Itself BWW Review: A PROPER PLACE at Village Shipwrecks Itself
by Jay Irwin - March 24, 2017

There's the old adage in any kind of entertainment that if you have a strong finish, the audience can forgive some pitfalls that may have come before. Unfortunately the new work currently playing at Village Theatre has many of those pitfalls (and some good moments too) but they're followed by one o... (more...)
BWW Review: Darkly Funny DRY POWDER at the Rep Lacks Much Else BWW Review: Darkly Funny DRY POWDER at the Rep Lacks Much Else
by Jay Irwin - March 23, 2017

There's a well-known TV and Film writer who has a reputation for those quick witted, fast paced banter conversations (sometimes in the halls of the White House and sometimes while creating a social media platform. You know who I mean). And it's fun to listen to these people be more eloquent and qu... (more...)
BWW Review: A Warm Cup of T with YANKEE PICKNEY at Theater Schmeater BWW Review: A Warm Cup of T with YANKEE PICKNEY at Theater Schmeater
by Amelia Reynolds - March 14, 2017

"Yankee Pickney" is a dynamic relic, a precious time capsule of diaries, photographs, poems, and stories about Jehan Òsanyin's complicated relationship with her identity, primarily her racial and ethnic identity. She talks about how her relationship to her race and ethnicity fluctuated depending on ... (more...)
BWW Review: Raucous Fun in Ghost Light's MACBETT but Lacks Levels BWW Review: Raucous Fun in Ghost Light's MACBETT but Lacks Levels
by Jay Irwin - March 13, 2017

It's fine to be in the audience's face and have a scene's energy turned up to 11 but when you do it for the entire play, it gets tiring. That's the issue with Ghost Light Theatricals' current production of "Macbett". Sure it's an absurdist comedy piece but they can have levels too and without them... (more...)
BWW Review: ACT's TRIBES – Touching and Engaging But a Bit Cliché and Forced BWW Review: ACT's TRIBES – Touching and Engaging But a Bit Cliché and Forced
by Jay Irwin - March 10, 2017

I want to start off, Dear Readers, by stating that I really did enjoy ACT's current production of "Tribes". There are some great performances and it's a funny, engaging play with rich dialog. But even with my level of enjoyment in the moments of the play I can't help but also see some glaring shor... (more...)
BWW Review: ArtsWest's Gripping MILK LIKE SUGAR Needs Some Time to Settle BWW Review: ArtsWest's Gripping MILK LIKE SUGAR Needs Some Time to Settle
by Jay Irwin - March 03, 2017

A play like "Milk Like Sugar" about three teenage girls making a pact to all get pregnant while still in school would be a ridiculous premise if it weren't for the fact that it's based in reality. And while the current production at ArtsWest may boast some gripping performances, opening night also ... (more...)