Santa Barbara Theater Reviews
 


BWW Review: CRIMES OF THE HEART at SBCC Jurkowitz Theatre BWW Review: CRIMES OF THE HEART at SBCC Jurkowitz Theatre
by Anna Jensen - April 20, 2018

A Delightful Southern Treat. SBCC's production of CRIMES OF THE HEART by Beth Henley, Directed by R. Michael Gros. April 11-28, 2018, Jurkowitz Theatre, SBCC West Campus, 900 block of Cliff Dr. 805-965-5935 or www.theatregroupsbcc.com for tickets and information.... (more...)
BWW Review: TROUBLE IN TAHITI AND GALLANTRY at Center Stage Theater BWW Review: TROUBLE IN TAHITI AND GALLANTRY at Center Stage Theater
by Anna Jensen - April 18, 2018

A rare treat this weekend only, Opera Santa Barbara presents an evening of one-act comic operas in the intimacy of Center Stage Theater. Leonard Bernstein's Trouble in Tahiti will be performed along with Douglas Moore's broadly comic work, Gallantry. Both showcase the talents of Opera Santa Barbara'... (more...)
BWW Review: THE INVISIBLE HAND at New Victoria Theater BWW Review: THE INVISIBLE HAND at New Victoria Theater
by Anna Jensen - April 16, 2018

Entrancing but, as the kids in theory class say, 'problematic'... (more...)
BWW Review: AMERICAN IDIOT at Center Stage Theater BWW Review: AMERICAN IDIOT at Center Stage Theater
by Anna Jensen - April 11, 2018

The punk rock musical American Idiot, now on stage at Center Stage, gives Green Day fans an opportunity to immerse themselves into the titular album through dance, imagery, and, of course, music. American Idiot does not tell a story so much as it performs the gesture of punk rock: a clench-fisted re... (more...)
BWW Review: COMMUNICATING DOORS at SBCC Theater Group BWW Review: COMMUNICATING DOORS at SBCC Theater Group
by Maggie Yates - March 10, 2018

Alan Ayckbourne's 'Communicating Doors,' produced by the SBCC Theatre Group, follows Poopay (Felicia Hall), a blue-collar London dominatrix who shows up at a luxury hotel to service wealthy business mogul, Reece (Matt Smith), but instead gets pressured into witnessing his deathbed confession of embe... (more...)
BWW Review: THE CRUCIBLE at Marian Theatre, Santa Maria BWW Review: THE CRUCIBLE at Marian Theatre, Santa Maria
by Anna Jensen - February 21, 2018

It's 1692, 1953, or 2018, or any year, as you see it...... (more...)
BWW Review: THE CITY OF CONVERSATION at Ensemble Theatre Company BWW Review: THE CITY OF CONVERSATION at Ensemble Theatre Company
by Anna Jensen - February 13, 2018

Sharon Lawrence stars in The City of Conversation... (more...)
BWW Review: MISS BENNET: CHRISTMAS AT PEMBERLEY at Ensemble Theatre Company BWW Review: MISS BENNET: CHRISTMAS AT PEMBERLEY at Ensemble Theatre Company
by Maggie Yates - December 09, 2017

Ensemble's Pemberley boasts an attractive set, beautiful costumes, and a talented cast who maintain a smooth, frothy sugarplum taste throughout. But with so little at stake for over two hours and a concerning level of emphasis on a woman's place Miss Bennet: Christmas at Pemberley seems too long a... (more...)
BWW Review: KING LEAR at UCSB: Performing Arts Theater BWW Review: KING LEAR at UCSB: Performing Arts Theater
by Anna Jensen - November 24, 2017

Critic A.C. Bradley claimed that of all of Shakespeare's tragedies, King Lear was too sublime for the stage. For Bradley, King Lear's depiction of madness, stormy landscapes, filial deception, and treachery went to extremities best conjured by a reader who can imaginatively fill in the breadth of Sh... (more...)
BWW Review: A VIEW FROM THE BRIDGE at UCSB Department Of Theater And Dance BWW Review: A VIEW FROM THE BRIDGE at UCSB Department Of Theater And Dance
by Maggie Yates - November 21, 2017

Though Shakespeare and Miller wrote their plays several centuries apart, the combo is fitting both plays articulate the struggles of frustrated protagonists trying to understand their function in a shifting social scape and their priorities within dysfunctional familial relationships.... (more...)
BWW Review: AND THEN THERE WERE NONE at San Marcos High School BWW Review: AND THEN THERE WERE NONE at San Marcos High School
by Anna Jensen - November 18, 2017

Murder and mystery staged by San Marcos High School under the direction of Riley Berris... (more...)
BWW Review: THE RESISTIBLE RISE OF ARTURO UI at Westmont Theatre Department BWW Review: THE RESISTIBLE RISE OF ARTURO UI at Westmont Theatre Department
by Maggie Yates - October 27, 2017

Sophisticated and engrossing, 'Resistible Rise' is about more than a glory-hungry henchman for whom the price of power is never too high it's about the price tag of power (in this case: justice) and how quickly a desperate population will turn a blind eye to corruption and put their faith in a chari... (more...)
BWW Review: ONE MAN, TWO GUVNORS at SBCC Theater Group BWW Review: ONE MAN, TWO GUVNORS at SBCC Theater Group
by Maggie Yates - October 22, 2017

'One Man, Two Guvnors' is based on Carlo Goldoni's 'Servant of Two masters,' a 1746 commedia dell'arte piece featuring the Truffaldino harlequin as a prospecting errand boy who works for two different men, constantly confusing what tasks he's supposed to be performing for which boss. As the title su... (more...)
BWW Review: HUSBANDS AND WIVES at Ensemble Theater Company BWW Review: HUSBANDS AND WIVES at Ensemble Theater Company
by Maggie Yates - October 13, 2017

'Husbands and Wives,' Woody Allen's film--and now, Ensemble Theater Company's adaptation by Jonathan Fox--examines the slings and arrows of long-term pairing through the relationships of two middle-aged couples in crisis.... (more...)
BWW Review: ANAÏS, A DANCE OPERA  by Mixed eMotion Theatrix In Association With Diana Raab BWW Review: ANAÏS, A DANCE OPERA by Mixed eMotion Theatrix In Association With Diana Raab
by Maggie Yates - September 11, 2017

Ana s: A Dance Opera is a multimedia collaberation featuring the life story of writer, intellectual, and provocateur, Ana s Nin.... (more...)
BWW Review: ON THE VERGE SEASON 3 at CAW: Community Arts Workshop BWW Review: ON THE VERGE SEASON 3 at CAW: Community Arts Workshop
by Maggie Yates - August 17, 2017

A community's point of view is expressed through the local art scene, and Santa Barbara's On The Verge Festival promotes underrepresented points of view by producing theatre by female playwrights, LGBTQIA playwrights, and playwrights of color. In its third year, On The Verge's company of young artis... (more...)
BWW Review: HIGH SOCIETY at SBCC Theatre Group BWW Review: HIGH SOCIETY at SBCC Theatre Group
by Maggie Yates - July 21, 2017

While concepts in High Society may have been viewed as 'kitschy' when the play premiered two decades ago, in the age of Instagram stars and The Real Housewives, these characters, who are charming in their relative innocence as compared to the shameless celebrities of the information age (even our pr... (more...)
BWW Review: Elements Theatre Collective Presents STUPID FUCKING BIRD BWW Review: Elements Theatre Collective Presents STUPID FUCKING BIRD
by Maggie Yates - July 14, 2017

'Stupid Fucking Bird,' which runs this weekend and next at various locations throughout Santa Barbara, offers a self-aware, fourth-wall-indifferent show with a wicked sense of humor.... (more...)
BWW Review: THE CAUCASIAN CHALK CIRCLE at UCSB Theatre Department BWW Review: THE CAUCASIAN CHALK CIRCLE at UCSB Theatre Department
by Maggie Yates - June 10, 2017

There's a lot to unpack from director and professor Simon Williams' production of The Caucasian Chalk Circle, the Brecht epic that expands a parable into a detailed exploration of how well human kindness fares in a lawless land of political upheaval within a universe marked by an stylistically absur... (more...)
BWW Review: The Big F: Elaine Gale Reminds Us That We Are All ONE GOOD EGG BWW Review: The Big F: Elaine Gale Reminds Us That We Are All ONE GOOD EGG
by Maggie Yates - June 04, 2017

Elaine Gale's one-woman show, One Good Egg, offers Santa Barbara a frank conversation about gender and the female experience. One Good Egg is about Gale's journey toward motherhood-one that delivers an important narrative about handling a very specific type of failure: the inability to have a child.... (more...)
BWW Review: RICHARD III by Lit Moon Theatre Company BWW Review: RICHARD III by Lit Moon Theatre Company
by Maggie Yates - March 24, 2017

Lit Moon's highly stylized version of 'Richard III' is strangely appealing (albeit disjointed and inaccessible—especially for those without a fairly thorough grasp of the narrative). This envisioning of the play tends more toward a performance-art installation than overtly representational theatre.... (more...)
BWW Review: MR. BURNS, A POST-ELECTRIC PLAY at UCSB Department Of Theater And Dance BWW Review: MR. BURNS, A POST-ELECTRIC PLAY at UCSB Department Of Theater And Dance
by Maggie Yates - March 10, 2017

In the UCSB Department of Theatre and Dance's production of Mr. Burns, A Post-Electric Play, The Simpsons is not only significant, it's a currency that determines characters' livelihoods--and potentially their survival. Mr. Burns, a Post-Electric Play, written by Anne Washburn and directed by Tom Wh... (more...)
BWW Review: BLOOD WEDDING at Westmont Theatre Department BWW Review: BLOOD WEDDING at Westmont Theatre Department
by Maggie Yates - March 08, 2017

The earthy aesthetic of this production suits the pastoral lifeblood of the play. The set, designed by Yuri Okahana and built in layers of depth, gives the feeling of expanse and isolation. Performers create a slowly shifting backdrop of gentle choreography. In this setting, Lorca's tale of a love t... (more...)
BWW Review: LYDIA at UCSB Department Of Theater And Dance BWW Review: LYDIA at UCSB Department Of Theater And Dance
by Maggie Yates - February 24, 2017

Lydia, a soothsaying stranger, is an immigrant from Mexico who works as a live-in maid for the Flores family. Her influence propels the family, already in massive disrepair, toward the inevitable pain of sudden truths revealed.... (more...)
BWW Review: HARD RAIN: A THEATRICAL PROTEST Presents Thoughts on the Election BWW Review: HARD RAIN: A THEATRICAL PROTEST Presents Thoughts on the Election
by Maggie Yates - December 28, 2016

'Hard Rain: A Theatrical Protest' offered a workshop view of six new dramatic renderings of the American experience in this time of political turbulence. Commissioned and curated by John Blondell, this festival included short works inspired by the recent election. These early drafts functioned well ... (more...)