In 25 years of working with newspapers and magazines, Paul Batterson has had the pleasure of interviewing wide variety of people, from Phil Campbell of Motorhead to David Hasselhoff to the San Diego chicken. He was born in Columbus, graduated from the University of Missouri-Columbia and spent three years in Frankfurt, Germany before returning to Columbus. He lives here with his wife, Nancy, and children Alicia and Grant.
Weathervane Playhouse managing artistic director Kevin Connell had a sense of trepidation leading up to the July 27 opening night for AVENUE Q. Written by Robert Lopez, Jeff Marx and Jeff Whitty, AVENUE Q is classified as 'Sesame Street for adults' and is the only show on the Newark theatre's summer calendar to come with a warning label about strong language and adult content. It also may be the only Weathervane production to rhyme the lines 'We'll be fine, thank you! See ya' with 'Hope you don't get gonorrhea.'BWW Reviews: Madcap COMEDY OF TENORS a comedic tour de farce July 17, 2017
There are two inherent dangers when presenting a sequel. The first is those who saw the earlier work will, undoubtedly, compare the current work to the former. The second is those who didn't see the previous piece might become lost when viewing the later work.BWW Review: Plan a trip to see Weathervane's SOUTH PACIFIC July 5, 2017
If you pull out the magnifying glass and really search the fine print, you will find listed CHILDREN OF EDEN, the opening production of the Weathervane Playhouse's summer season. The two-and-a half-hour, two-act musical opened June 1 and runs through June 10 at the Playhouse (100 Price Street in Newark).BWW Reviews: Short North Stage's SPAMALOT Captures Lunacy of Monty Python March 27, 2017
Prior to working in the Short North Stage's production of HAND TO GOD, Danny Turek had very little experience in the world of puppetry. After opening the show on Feb. 2, Turek and his alter ego 'Tyrone' appear to be inseparable.BWW Review: MAMMA MIA May Induce 70s Flashbacks December 27, 2016
As a diehard rock and roll fan of groups like the Rolling Stones and the Who, I have been harboring a deep, dark secret. The second album I bought growing up was ABBA's Gold. The quartet, which was Sweden's second largest export next to Volvo, had a knack for producing hum-worthy harmonies and catchy choruses that stick in your subconscious for months and months to come.BWW Review: CHRISTMAS IN COLUMBUS Tries to Raise the Cheer-o-Meter December 11, 2016
Ahhh, the joys of middle school: three years of bad skin, Mrs. Goldsmith's English class, bullies, popularity contests, and enough deep, emotional scars to fill therapists' offices for years to come. The Gallery Players production of 13: THE MUSICAL, the witty and at times painfully accurate depiction of that delightful time right before high school, is dead on the money.BWW Review: Audience Not Left Hanging in Short North Stage's KISS OF THE SPIDER WOMAN November 7, 2016
Spiders and Broadway musicals don't always work well with each other. Witness the mixed fortunes of SPIDER-MAN: TURN OFF THE NIGHT. However, Short North Stage's epic production of KISS OF THE SPIDER WOMAN: THE MUSICAL is one of the "can't miss" musicals in the Columbus' fall season.BWW Review: THE ADDAMS FAMILY Provides Fresh Look to Iconic Television Show September 26, 2016
It can be a monstrous challenge to produce a musical based on an iconic television show. Most of the audience comes in with its own set of preconceived expectations of what certain characters should sound, dress and look like.BWW Review: Short North Stage Swings for FENCES and Delivers September 9, 2016
The Short North Stage production crews built another extraordinary set for its production of August Wilson's FENCES - a ramshackle brick house proudly kept by Troy (Mujahid Abdul-Rashid) and Rose Maxson (Rita Gregory) in somewhere, Middle America. But it was a simple prop, a cloth baseball suspended by a nylon rope off an artificial tree that provided the perfect analogy for the performance.BWW Review: Something WICKED This Way Comes August 19, 2016
It's hard to imagine this but the musical WICKED is now a teenager. The Stephen Schwartz musical, based on the story of the Wizard of Oz as told from the Wicked Witch of the West's prospective, debuted on Broadway in 2003 and captured theatre goers' rapture and attention.BWW Review: Theatre Contest a GIFT to Columbus August 8, 2016
In two years, the Grace InFused Theatre Festival went from the drawing table to a full day event at the Columbus Performing Arts Center on Aug. 6. The festival, which promotes gospel-based productions, drew close to 100 people to a six-hour presentation that featured the world-premiere of STAINED GLASS, a table reading of PRODIGAL BROTHERS, two monologues by Howi Tiller and the music of Joe Hendrickson.BWW Review: THE 25TH ANNUAL PUTNAM COUNTY SPELLING BEE perfect capper for Weathervane's summer season August 5, 2016
Behind every competition, no matter how noble or earnest its aims might be, are a group of ruthless, cut-throat competitors trying to win. THE 25TH ANNUAL PUTNAM COUNTY SPELLING BEE is no different. Watching the six 'competitors' go after the county's coveted spelling trophy provides the perfect closer to the summer schedule for the Weathervane Playhouse.BWW Preview: Gospel-based Theatre Festival Features National Plays and Playwrights July 26, 2016
Not all theatre is designed to be an escape, a refuge from our ordinary lives. Every once-in-a-while a piece comes along that not only entertains us but makes us think. When those two elements come together, you've really got something special.BWW Review: Weathervane's JEKYLL & HYDE Bloody, Brilliant June 6, 2016
'I learned to recognize the thorough and primitive duality of man; I saw that, of the two natures that contended in the field of my consciousness, even if I could rightly be said to be either, it was only because I was radically both.'