Michael Dale

Michael Dale After 20-odd years singing, dancing and acting in dinner theatres, summer stocks and the ever-popular audience participation murder mysteries (try improvising with audiences after they?ve had two hours of open bar), Michael Dale segued his theatrical ambitions into playwriting. The buildings which once housed the 5 Off-Off Broadway plays he penned have all been destroyed or turned into a Starbucks, but his name remains the answer to the trivia question, "Who wrote the official play of Babe Ruth's 100th Birthday?" He served as Artistic Director for The Play's The Thing Theatre Company, helping to bring free live theatre to underserved communities, and dabbled a bit in stage managing and in directing cabaret shows before answering the call (it was an email, actually) to become BroadwayWorld.com's first Chief Theatre Critic. While not attending shows Michael can be seen at Citi Field pleading for the Mets to stop imploding. Likes: Strong book musicals and ambitious new works. Dislikes: Unprepared celebrities making their stage acting debuts by starring on Broadway and weak bullpens.


BWW Review: New York Gilbert & Sullivan Players' Rollickingly Fun THE PIRATES OF PENZANCEBWW Review: NYGASP's THE PIRATES OF PENZANCE
Posted: Dec. 30, 2018

BWW Review: Gary Apple's CHRISTMAS IN HELL, A Holiday Tale About Bad Fruitcake and Charles MansonBWW Review: Gary Apple's CHRISTMAS IN HELL
Posted: Dec. 25, 2018

Ten Times New York Theatre Tackled Political and Social Issues in 2018Ten Times New York Theatre Tackled Political and Social Issues in 2018
Posted: Dec. 31, 2018

Posted: Jan. 17, 2019


April 1 - Stephen Sondheim To Make Guest Appearance, Premiere New Song, On Crazy Ex-GirlfriendApril 1 - Sondheim To Make Guest Appearance On Crazy Ex-Girlfriend
Posted: Apr. 1, 2018

BWW Review:  Company XIV's CINDERELLA, An Enchanted Evening of Erotic Fun by Austin McCormickBWW Review: Company XIV's CINDERELLA by Austin McCormick
Posted: Mar. 19, 2018

BWW Review:  Taylor Trensch Brings Darker Shades To The Title Character of DEAR EVAN HANSENBWW Review: Taylor Trensch in DEAR EVAN HANSEN
Posted: Mar. 3, 2018

BWW Review: FLIGHT at McKittrick Hotel is More Art Installation Than TheatreBWW Review: FLIGHT at McKittrick Hotel
Posted: Feb. 20, 2018

BWW Review: Truth Is A Point of View in Three One-Acts at LABUTE NEW THEATER FESTIVAL
January 17, 2019

During the first year of his presidency, after violence broke out in Charlottesville, Virginia during a protest involving white supremacists, many of whom were displaying Nazi symbols and slogans, Donald Trump infamously noted that there were 'very fine people' on both sides of the conflict. One could imagine the president regarding the character created by Neil LaBute for his solo one-act 'The Fourth Reich' to be one of those very fine people.

BWW Review: HEAR WORD! NAIJA WOMAN TALK TRUE at The Public's Under The Radar Festival
January 12, 2019

One of the great opportunities afforded to playgoers at The Public Theater's annual Under The Radar Festival is the chance to see how theatre companies from other countries address the same issues being tackled by their American counterparts.

BWW Review: Tarell Alvin McCraney's Coming-Of-Age Drama CHOIR BOY Sings Out Spiritual Nourishment
January 9, 2019

"When I was little, my grandmother would sing songs to me that she told me freed slaves," says Pharus Jonathan Young, the central character of Tarell Alvin McCraney's emotionally thick coming-of-age drama, CHOIR BOY.

BWW Review: Marin Ireland Rages Against Patriarchy in Abby Rosebrock's BLUE RIDGE
January 12, 2019

If the majority of Broadway ticket-buyers valued great acting as much as they valued celebrity, Marin Ireland would have been an above-the-title, name-in-lights star a long time ago. Certainly New York's reviewing press, as a whole, has been doing its part to advise playgoers of the strength, intelligence and complexity she consistently brings to her contrasting portrayals in works such as THE RUBY SUNRISE, KILL FLOOR and IRONDALE.

BWW Review: At The Public's Under The Radar Festival, New Saloon's MINOR CHARACTER Riffs on a Chekhov Classic
January 6, 2019

At the commencement of MINOR CHARACTER, New Saloon's offering at the Public Theater's 2019 Under The Radar Festival, actor Madeline Wise stands downstage center, faces the audience and, with barely any body movement or facial expressions, begins rattling off the lines of various characters from the opening scene of Anton Chekhov's classic comedy of life's futility, UNCLE VANYA.

Ten Times New York Theatre Tackled Political and Social Issues in 2018
December 31, 2018

Sure, Broadway is traditionally known for its glitz and glamour, but New York audiences have never shied away from socially relevant theatre, either. And while controversial issues are more frequently discussed Off-Broadway, 2018 saw a great many political and social themes brought up throughout Manhattan's stages. So here are ten times New York theatre tackled political and social issues in 2018

BWW Review: New York Gilbert & Sullivan Players' Rollickingly Fun THE PIRATES OF PENZANCE
December 30, 2018

Though there's nary a mention of snowfall or jingle bells in THE PIRATES OF PENZANCE, the abundance of joy and good clean humor, not to mention some terrific voices, in the New York Gilbert and Sullivan Players' frothily charming production of G&S's 1879 romantic romp makes it a grand choice for holiday entertainment.

BWW Review: Gary Apple's CHRISTMAS IN HELL, A Holiday Tale About Bad Fruitcake and Charles Manson
December 25, 2018

The humorous set-up for the new musical at The York, Christmas in Hell is a bit of an old chestnut, but bookwriter/composer/lyricist Gary Apple makes it sing nicely.

BWW Review: Mentalist Scott Silven's WONDERS AT DUSK Combines Illusion With A Bit Of Group Therapy
December 23, 2018

"Raise your hand if you consider yourself to be a trustworthy person." Those of a cynical nature might consider that a hapless request to aim at a New York audience, but sincerity is the key to mentalist Scott Silven's WONDERS AT DUSK, playing at the atmospherically dim Club Car at The McKittrick Hotel. Or at least the illusion of sincerity.

BWW Review: Peter Rothstein's Extraordinarily Moving and Beautifully Realized ALL IS CALM: THE CHRISTMAS TRUCE OF 1914
December 22, 2018

Shortly after midnight, on Christmas Day of 1914, a German soldier whose name is now lost to history committed what might be the most subversive act in all of modern warfare. He walked, unarmed, out of the front line trenches and into the middle of No Man's Land, faced the enemy British soldiers before him and, in his native tongue, began singing 'Silent Night.'

BWW Review: Iranian Playwright Nassim Soleimanpour's NASSIM Encourages Cultural Understanding Through Language
December 17, 2018

In a city where hundreds of theatre productions are produced every year before audiences who encourage artists to experiment beyond the norm, it takes a lot for a play in New York to be regarded as unconventional.

BWW Review: Jeff Daniels is Atticus Finch in Aaron Sorkin and Bartlett Sher's Exquisite Adaptation of TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD
December 13, 2018

Without knowing any better, one might easily mistake the new stage adaptation of Harper Lee's Pulitzer-winning 1960 novel 'To Kill A Mockingbird' for a revival of a classic Golden Age Broadway drama. So earnest in tone and full of plainspoken poetics is Aaron Sorkin's thoroughly engaging text. So old-school honest are the performances given by director Bartlett Sher's 24-member cast, beautifully framed in rural elegance designed by Miriam Buether (set), Ann Roth (costumes) and Jennifer Tipton (lights).

BWW Review: Amy Heckerling Pens New Lyrics To 90s Hits To Bring CLUELESS To The Musical Stage
December 13, 2018

The inherent problem with trying to craft a book musical around a score made of previously-existing hit songs is that the lyrics rarely match the character/situation specifics enough to keep the story moving. So film director/screenwriter Amy Heckerling tries finagling around that challenge in the new musical based on her 1995 coming-of-age romantic comedy, CLUELESS.

December 12, 2018

It was fifteen years ago when over forty million people tuned into the season two finale of 'American Idol' to see Rubin Studdard win the crown over runner-up Clay Aiken. This reviewer wasn't one of them. And aside from Aiken's stint on Broadway as a replacement in SPAMALOT, he'll admit to not having paid much attention to the careers of the two vocalists. But, based on the enjoyable antics now on display at the Imperial titled RUBEN & CLAY'S FIRST ANNUAL CHRISTMAS CAROL FAMILY FUN PAGEANT SPECTACULAR REUNION SHOW, the fellows have definitely found an interested viewer if they ever hosted a television variety show.

BWW Review: Heather Raffo's NOURA Takes An Ibsen-Like Approach To Iraqi Assimilation Into America
December 11, 2018

The lack of visible doors in our view of the home of the title character of Heather Raffo's drama of an immigrant Christian Iraqi family in America, Noura, appears more and more to be a symbolic gesture once it becomes apparent that her story takes its cue from Henrik Ibsen's A DOLL'S HOUSE.

BWW Review: Jeremy O. Harris' Extremely Daring SLAVE PLAY Explores Sexual Dissatisfaction Caused By Racial Issues
December 10, 2018

It was over fifty years ago when designer Boris Aronson famously let a large mirror hang from the set of CABARET, forcing audience members to see their own reflections to bring home the point that what was happening in 1930s Germany could very well happen in America. And while that symbolic gesture may have become a bit of a cliche in the ensuing decades as it got used by other artists for other plays and musicals, designer Clint Ramos ads a provocative twist with the fully mirrored upstage wall in his design for Jeremy O. Harris' extremely daring, highly original and undoubtedly thought-provoking satirical drama, SLAVE PLAY.

BWW Review: John Kevin Jones Returns To Merchant's House Museum For Warm and Intimate A CHRISTMAS CAROL
December 9, 2018

For the past five holiday seasons in a row, savvy New York playgoers have been filling the upstairs parlor of East 4th Street's Merchant's House Museum for a warm and intimate evening of Christmas cheer; Summoners Ensemble Theatre's delightful production of actor John Kevin Jones recreating Charles Dickens' solo readings of A CHRISTMAS CAROL. Their 2018 engagement is the third time this reviewer has attended, and Jones' thoroughly engaging performance keeps getting better and better.

BWW Review: 1976 Satire Becomes 2018 Reality in Ivo van Hove and Lee Hall's Striking Adaptation of NETWORK
December 6, 2018

The audience loudly booed at the end of last Saturday night's preview performance of the new Broadway offering based on Paddy Chayefsky's Oscar-winning screenplay for the 1976 film classic "Network." Seriously, the great majority of viewers at the Belasco Theatre angrily booed what they were seeing onstage, a good many of them yelling out profanity-laced objections. Undoubtedly, playwright Lee Hall and director Ivo van Hove must have been delighted.

BWW Review: Stephanie J. Block Dazzles With Power In Gutsy, Glitzy and Glam THE CHER SHOW
December 3, 2018

From the moment the houselights dim and the music cranks up on The Cher Show, Broadway's newest bio-musical, the message is clear. Surrender to the fabulousness ahead and brace yourself for a show just as gutsy, glitzy and glam as the icon it ravishingly celebrates.

BWW Review: Company XIV's Erotically Elegant NUTCRACKER ROUGE Heats Up The Holiday Season
December 2, 2018

Since family-friendly entertainments tend to dominate the holiday performing arts scene, it's especially cheery that for the past nineyears that scandalous crew called Company XIV has been offering grownups an option that's decidedly more naughty than nice.