Seattle Theater Reviews
 


BWW Review: WELCOME TO ARROYO'S at Theater Schmeater BWW Review: WELCOME TO ARROYO'S at Theater Schmeater
by Kelly Flynt - May 13, 2018

Welcome to Arroyo's is the story of two siblings in the aftermath of the death of their mother. Alejandro and Molly (Amalya) have different ways of honoring her memory that pervades every inch of their space - the business she ran below, and their apartment above. Alejandro decides to convert his mo... (more...)
BWW Review: SPT's HAND TO GOD is a Devilish Good Time BWW Review: SPT's HAND TO GOD is a Devilish Good Time
by Jay Irwin - May 12, 2018

Dear Readers, a few years back on one of my trips to the Mothership, I managed to catch Robert Askins' hilarious play "Hand to God" on Broadway and as soon as I finished wetting myself from laughter I thought, "Someone in Seattle needs to do this so my Dear Readers can wet themselves as well." Well... (more...)
BWW Review: Village's HAIRSPRAY is a Triple Threat of a Show BWW Review: Village's HAIRSPRAY is a Triple Threat of a Show
by Jay Irwin - May 11, 2018

Once again, Dear Readers, we've ventured into the realm of one of my favorites. We recently had my all-time number one in town, but I'd have to say Marc Shaiman and Scott Wittman's "Hairspray", is certainly in the top five with its infectious and rousing score and incredible book from Mark O'Donnel... (more...)
BWW Review: Paramount Presents LOVE NEVER DIES - Oh, Please Let It BWW Review: Paramount Presents LOVE NEVER DIES - Oh, Please Let It
by Jay Irwin - May 09, 2018

I'll admit that I've never been what you would call a fan of 'Phantom of the Opera'. I appreciate it for what it is, and I find it tolerable with some interesting melodies but largely it's all flash and no substance. But now comes the (gulp) sequel to 'Phantom', 'Love Never Dies' currently playing... (more...)
BWW Review: Reboot's LITTLE SHOP OF HORRORS Will Eat Your Heart BWW Review: Reboot's LITTLE SHOP OF HORRORS Will Eat Your Heart
by Jay Irwin - May 06, 2018

Dear Readers, we're about to enter the realm of my favorite show of all time, that of Howard Ashman and Alan Menken's musical masterpiece "Little Shop of Horrors". I tell you this in advance so you'll understand the gravitas of my critique of anyone attempting this particular show and I've seen man... (more...)
BWW Review: Seattle Shakes' SHAKESPEARE IN LOVE Lacks Both BWW Review: Seattle Shakes' SHAKESPEARE IN LOVE Lacks Both
by Jay Irwin - May 05, 2018

During the curtain speech Seattle Shakespeare Company Artistic Director (and director of the night's show) George Mount and Managing Director John Bradshaw joked on how they don't often get to present a Washington premiere since they usually deal in 400-year-old plays. What they also don't usually ... (more...)
BWW Review: PILGRIMS from Forward Flux Meanders with Little Payoff BWW Review: PILGRIMS from Forward Flux Meanders with Little Payoff
by Jay Irwin - May 04, 2018

Claire Kiechel, author of "Pilgrims" currently being offered from Forward Flux Productions at West of Lenin, lists in her bio that she is a writer on Netflix's "The OA". So, a Sci Fi play complete with mystery and secrets should be a surprise to no one. However, unlike "The OA", Kiechel's play mea... (more...)
BWW Review: Seattle Rep's FAMILIAR Reinvigorates the Wedding Comedy BWW Review: Seattle Rep's FAMILIAR Reinvigorates the Wedding Comedy
by Jay Irwin - May 03, 2018

The family dramedy of a wedding in chaos is no new idea in fact it's been done to death. That's not to say there aren't good ones but it's certainly a subject that's been thoroughly mined. Or so I thought. Danai Gurira's fantastic play "Familiar", currently playing at the Seattle Rep, takes this ... (more...)
BWW Review: Shakespeare in ASL with Sound Theatre Company's Delightful A MIDSUMMER NIGHT'S DREAM BWW Review: Shakespeare in ASL with Sound Theatre Company's Delightful A MIDSUMMER NIGHT'S DREAM
by Amelia Reynolds - May 03, 2018

Finally! In collaboration with Deaf Spotlight Presents, Sound Theatre Company has produced a bilingual "A Midsummer Night's Dream" with English and American Sign Language. This performance, now at 12th Avenue Arts, may have a streamlined aesthetic, but the incorporation of ASL makes the original Sha... (more...)
BWW Review: ArtsWest Really Goes for It With Demented Racial Carnival Ride AN OCTOROON BWW Review: ArtsWest Really Goes for It With Demented Racial Carnival Ride AN OCTOROON
by Amelia Reynolds - April 30, 2018

ArtsWest does it again with another cool, cutting-edge production about identity with their latest show, 'An Octoroon'. Many modern adaptations of antiquated productions pointing out racism, though well-intended, are comparatively watered-down to Brandon J. Simmons' razor-sharp adaptation of 'An Oct... (more...)
BWW Review: WET's Creepy Techno-thriller THE NETHER BWW Review: WET's Creepy Techno-thriller THE NETHER
by Jay Irwin - April 28, 2018

As the folks at Washington Ensemble Theatre point out over and over in the lobby and in the press info of their latest offering, Jennifer Haley's "The Nether", the show is filled with trigger warnings and not for the faint of heart. With strobe lights and elements of violence and sexual assault of ... (more...)
BWW Review: A Powerful GOAL! From ACT's THE WOLVES BWW Review: A Powerful GOAL! From ACT's THE WOLVES
by Jay Irwin - April 27, 2018

Slice of life plays can be difficult, at least I've always found them so. They tend toward story, upon story, upon story, with little through line or resolution as life goes on. Such could be the case with Sarah DeLappe's "The Wolves" currently at ACT were it not for the fact that it's chock full ... (more...)
BWW Review: Horse in Motion's Immersive HAMLET in Stimson-Green Mansion Truly--and Triumphantly--Unique BWW Review: Horse in Motion's Immersive HAMLET in Stimson-Green Mansion Truly--and Triumphantly--Unique
by Amelia Reynolds - April 26, 2018

It did not surprise me in the least to discover that Horse in Motion's immersive “Hamlet” is completely sold out for the remainder of its run. On the evening of my attendance, the waitlist was twenty people deep. If you get lucky enough to see the production, whether from showing up at 6:30PM on the... (more...)
BWW Review: Powerhouse Performances in Book-It's BRIEF WONDROUS LIFE OF OSCAR WAO BWW Review: Powerhouse Performances in Book-It's BRIEF WONDROUS LIFE OF OSCAR WAO
by Jay Irwin - April 22, 2018

Book-It Repertory Theatre has once again brought to life another gripping tale, this time with Junot Diaz's, "The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao", as adapted and directed by Elise Thoron. And as gripping as the tale is what makes it even more riveting are the powerhouse performances from the over... (more...)
BWW Review: MAP's Dark Absurd Comedy YEAR OF THE ROOSTER BWW Review: MAP's Dark Absurd Comedy YEAR OF THE ROOSTER
by Jay Irwin - April 15, 2018

On the surface Olivia Dufault's "Year of the Rooster" doesn't seem like a fun night out filled with laughs. A play about a failed trainer for cock fights. And to be honest it packs an ending that will not send you whistling into the street filled with hope for tomorrow. But this is MAP Theatre, a... (more...)
BWW Review: 5th Avenue's KISS ME, KATE is a Love Letter to Those Who Came Before BWW Review: 5th Avenue's KISS ME, KATE is a Love Letter to Those Who Came Before
by Jay Irwin - April 14, 2018

When you think the classic era of Broadway Musicals, many lean toward Rodgers and Hammerstein or Lerner and Loewe but for my money I always go right to Cole Porter. Maybe not as prolific when it comes to hit shows as the others but you can't dismiss the undeniable genius of "Anything Goes" and of c... (more...)
BWW Review: Gospel, Storytelling, and Fabulous Hats with Taproot Theatre's Musical CROWNS BWW Review: Gospel, Storytelling, and Fabulous Hats with Taproot Theatre's Musical CROWNS
by Amelia Reynolds - April 08, 2018

“Crowns” is a feel-good musical about hats. But it's also so much more than hats, in the way “The Vagina Monologues” is about more than just the female anatomy. Now performing at the Taproot Theatre, “Crowns” delights in this colorful production about history, experience, and culture.... (more...)
BWW Review: High-Energy Performances and Low-Hanging Fruit with Theater Schmeater's Farcical THE COUNTRY WIFE BWW Review: High-Energy Performances and Low-Hanging Fruit with Theater Schmeater's Farcical THE COUNTRY WIFE
by Amelia Reynolds - April 05, 2018

Theater Schmeater's 'The Country Wife' satirizes an appalling production from 1675 by the same name. Adapted by Rachel Adkins, this restored Restoration comedy keeps the story from the original roughly the same, but with some modern components and adaptations to gussy up the satire. 'The Country Wif... (more...)
BWW Review: Theatre22's HAPPIEST SONG PLAYS LAST: Punchy, but Discordant BWW Review: Theatre22's HAPPIEST SONG PLAYS LAST: Punchy, but Discordant
by Amelia Reynolds - April 04, 2018

'The Happiest Song Plays Last' puts two dissonant narratives side by side. Former marine Elliot (Joshua Chessin-Yudin) puts his wartime experience to practical use for motion pictures, acting as an on-set wartime expert for a docu-drama shot in Jordan. Moments in the script trigger his PTSD, but he... (more...)
BWW Review: SCT's NAKED MOLE RAT GETS DRESSED and Gets Rockin' BWW Review: SCT's NAKED MOLE RAT GETS DRESSED and Gets Rockin'
by Jay Irwin - March 31, 2018

Don't let the fact that the title has the word "naked" in it or that the same word is repeated several times in the opening number fool you. This is, indeed, a children's show. Yes, you are still at Seattle Children's Theatre and it's safe to bring the kids in as we're only talking about cute litt... (more...)
BWW Review: Seattle Public's IRONBOUND Delivers Raw Power BWW Review: Seattle Public's IRONBOUND Delivers Raw Power
by Jay Irwin - March 30, 2018

Seattle Public Theater tends towards the darker, edgier plays. That's not to say they're adverse to a comedy now and then as is evident with their next offering, 'Hand to God' which I saw on Broadway and laughed my butt off all the way through but still a very dark comedy. But I digress. Typicall... (more...)
BWW Review: Seattle Rep's World Premiere of THE GREAT LEAP Shoots and Scores BWW Review: Seattle Rep's World Premiere of THE GREAT LEAP Shoots and Scores
by Jay Irwin - March 29, 2018

If you're familiar with Lauren Yee, possibly from her previous premiere here in Seattle of 'The King of the Yees' last year, you know of her gift for storytelling and crisp dialog. So, when another Yee World Premiere, 'The Great Leap', was announced at the Seattle Rep I was excited. But, oh no! T... (more...)
BWW Review: Showtunes' BOYS FROM SYRACUSE Confused About Twins but Not About Fun BWW Review: Showtunes' BOYS FROM SYRACUSE Confused About Twins but Not About Fun
by Jay Irwin - March 25, 2018

I was speaking with a friend the other day about the current show from Showtunes Theatre Company, "The Boys from Syracuse". He's a somewhat new, fledgling musical theater geek and I said, that it was filled with great Rodgers and Hart songs many of which are standards now. I went through a few and... (more...)
BWW Review: Problematic MERCHANT OF VENICE from Seattle Shakes BWW Review: Problematic MERCHANT OF VENICE from Seattle Shakes
by Jay Irwin - March 24, 2018

Seattle Shakespeare Company has never been one to shy away from a challenge and with their current production of "The Merchant of Venice" they certainly seem to have a challenge on their hands. As I see it they have one challenge they can, and hopefully will overcome as the production continues, th... (more...)
BWW Review: ACT and 5th Ave's RIDE THE CYCLONE - A Haunting Thrill Ride You Must Take BWW Review: ACT and 5th Ave's RIDE THE CYCLONE - A Haunting Thrill Ride You Must Take
by Jay Irwin - March 23, 2018

ACT and The 5th Avenue Theatre's current joint production, 'Ride the Cyclone', now playing at ACT, is one of those quirky little musicals that on the surface should not work. I didn't really know what to expect going in but based on what it is, it's problematic at best. Fortunately for us the bril... (more...)