Seattle Theater Reviews
 


BWW Review: 5th Ave's RAGTIME Strikes to the Heart of its Own Story and Beyond BWW Review: 5th Ave's RAGTIME Strikes to the Heart of its Own Story and Beyond
by Jay Irwin - October 21, 2017

Back in 1997 a somewhat younger Broadway Geek became obsessed with the musical Ragtime . I even travelled to other cities to see it as many times as I could and basically became obsessed. I tell you this so you'll understand, Dear Readers, my deep love for this show which is firmly one of my top ... (more...)
BWW Review: ACT's Searing THE CRUCIBLE Shines with all Substance and Very Little Flash BWW Review: ACT's Searing THE CRUCIBLE Shines with all Substance and Very Little Flash
by Jay Irwin - October 20, 2017

Arthur Miller's classic The Crucible remains a kind of mainstay of theater across the country from professional productions down to the myriad high school productions. But for it to ring true it must resonate with society's repeated history with mob mentality whether that be the literal Salem wit... (more...)
BWW Review: BenDeLaCreme and ACTLab's BEWARE THE TERROR OF GAYLORD MANOR a Spooky, Kooky Cabaret BWW Review: BenDeLaCreme and ACTLab's BEWARE THE TERROR OF GAYLORD MANOR a Spooky, Kooky Cabaret
by Amelia Reynolds - October 17, 2017

BenDeLaCreme is a drag queen with a knack for the holidays--she leads the fantastic annual Homo for the Holidays (coming this Christmas!) and memorably played a craggy old lady with a disembodied head for a daughter on some TV show with RuPaul (per the Playbill). This season, in collaboration wi... (more...)
BWW Review: Chinese Gender and Economic Politics with Seattle Public's WORLD OF EXTREME HAPPINESS BWW Review: Chinese Gender and Economic Politics with Seattle Public's WORLD OF EXTREME HAPPINESS
by Jay Irwin - October 16, 2017

Life is hard for female children and for women in general in China. This is the basic message from Frances Ya-Chu Cowhig's play The World of Extreme Happiness currently playing at Seattle Public Theater. The big problem with this is that we all know this and so beyond that, what story do they wa... (more...)
BWW Review: Disney's ALADDIN at the Paramount Grows Up and Rediscovers its Magic BWW Review: Disney's ALADDIN at the Paramount Grows Up and Rediscovers its Magic
by Jay Irwin - October 14, 2017

Back in 2011 many of us here in Seattle were subjected to a very different version of Disney's Aladdin than what you might see currently playing at the Paramount Theatre. Also for many of us that previous version left a bad taste in our mouths for the property. A property that we loved in its or... (more...)
BWW Review: The Infectious Bliss of Seattle Rep's PRIDE AND PREJUDICE BWW Review: The Infectious Bliss of Seattle Rep's PRIDE AND PREJUDICE
by Jay Irwin - October 05, 2017

There's a general rule of thumb in any theatrical production that if the cast is enjoying what they are doing then that will translate into audience connection and enjoyment. Of course, good source material like Jane Austen's classic Pride and Prejudice doesn't hurt the issue nor does a wonderful... (more...)
BWW Review: Fantastic Z's NEXT FALL a Beautiful Play with an Uneven Emotional Core BWW Review: Fantastic Z's NEXT FALL a Beautiful Play with an Uneven Emotional Core
by Jay Irwin - September 30, 2017

There are two things, Dear Readers, that drive me crazy in watching any theatrical endeavor, shmacting and not listening, we'll dive into the meanings of those more in a bit, but what they accomplish is sapping the emotional core from a show. Fantastic Z's current production of Next Fall partiall... (more...)
BWW Review: Orwelian ONERUS Sets New Standard for Sci-Fi Dinner Theatre at Café Nordo BWW Review: Orwelian ONERUS Sets New Standard for Sci-Fi Dinner Theatre at Café Nordo
by Amelia Reynolds - September 28, 2017

The intensely immersive experience of dining at ONERUS is perfect for fans who love and respect well-written sci-fi. Directed by Opal Peachey, this thoughtful, thought-provoking cautionary tale is science fiction at its finest (and the food ain't half bad either).... (more...)
BWW Review: Theater Schmeater's NEIGHBORHOOD 3 Confounds with Little Payoff BWW Review: Theater Schmeater's NEIGHBORHOOD 3 Confounds with Little Payoff
by Jay Irwin - September 25, 2017

Let me assure you that you need not have seen Neighborhood 1 or Neighborhood 2 in order to understand Theater Schmeater's current show Neighborhood 3: Requisition of Doom for two reasons. First, there are no such things as Neighborhood 1 or Neighborhood 2 as the title does not refer to an... (more...)
BWW Review: Forward Flux's Double Feature, Pt. 2: She's 32, He's 15, NO MORE SAD THINGS Is Still Worth Seeing BWW Review: Forward Flux's Double Feature, Pt. 2: She's 32, He's 15, NO MORE SAD THINGS Is Still Worth Seeing
by Amelia Reynolds - September 24, 2017

It starts ambiguously; two actors stare lovingly into each other's eyes, knelt on the ground as a third person sound-checks their ukulele. The two lovebirds Jessiee (Kiki Abba) and Kahekili (Lance Valdez), do not look like your typical, starry-eyed couple. And that kind of becomes the joke in No Mo... (more...)
BWW Review: Forward Flux's Double Feature, Pt. 1: LAS MARIPOSAS Y LOS MUERTOS Calls Out Cultural Appropriation in Modern Music BWW Review: Forward Flux's Double Feature, Pt. 1: LAS MARIPOSAS Y LOS MUERTOS Calls Out Cultural Appropriation in Modern Music
by Amelia Reynolds - September 24, 2017

Forward Flux's hosts another double feature, currently performing at West of Lenin. Las Mariposas Y Los Muertos is one big middle finger to Pitchfork and Vampire Weekend. Rolled into a story of three jaded musicians striving for more authenticity in the cultural milieu, here lies a call to arms co... (more...)
BWW Review: THE LAST FIVE YEARS at Taproot Showcases More Talent Than You Might Expect BWW Review: THE LAST FIVE YEARS at Taproot Showcases More Talent Than You Might Expect
by Jay Irwin - September 22, 2017

The Last Five Years , that Jason Robert Brown quirky two hander gets put up quite a bit and it stands to reason, it's a fun show filled with rich songs, it's only two actors, it typically has little to no set and so everyone and their dog puts it on. I've seen it multiple times since it came on th... (more...)
BWW Review: Et Tu, Brute? is Comme Ci Comme Ça with Seattle Shakespeare Company's JULIUS CAESAR BWW Review: Et Tu, Brute? is Comme Ci Comme Ça with Seattle Shakespeare Company's JULIUS CAESAR
by Amelia Reynolds - September 20, 2017

This rendition of Julius Caesar by the Seattle Shakespeare Company will offer a few surprises. It is a streamlined production with a race and gender-diverse cast. With no clear-cut villains and heroes, this epic tale of political savagery has an engaging narrative. But when said savagery feels tep... (more...)
BWW Review: TEH INTERNET IS SERIOUS BUSINESS from WET brings the Lulz and Even Some Thoughtz BWW Review: TEH INTERNET IS SERIOUS BUSINESS from WET brings the Lulz and Even Some Thoughtz
by Jay Irwin - September 19, 2017

First and foremost, this is not a typo. The current show from Washington Ensemble Theatre is titled Teh Internet is Serious Business no matter how many times spell check tries to auto correct it for me. And with a title like that you might assume that this will just be a series of computer jokes... (more...)
BWW Review: Strawberry Theatre Workshop's WHY WE HAVE A BODY a Head-Scratcher BWW Review: Strawberry Theatre Workshop's WHY WE HAVE A BODY a Head-Scratcher
by Amelia Reynolds - September 19, 2017

Everyone has memories that feel rife with significance, but said significance does not necessarily make sense to others. And if the best depiction of said memory is beyond traditional language, then playwrights like Claire Chafee use poetic language to communicate said significance. In Chafee's Why... (more...)
BWW Review: Book-It Examines the Birth of an Icon with I KNOW WHY THE CAGED BIRD SINGS BWW Review: Book-It Examines the Birth of an Icon with I KNOW WHY THE CAGED BIRD SINGS
by Jay Irwin - September 17, 2017

Easily one of the most influential American writers of our time, Maya Angelou beyond being an amazing poet an author was also an outspoken civil rights activist and icon for our age. Book-It Repertory has done honor to this fine woman with their current production of her autobiography I Know Why t... (more...)
BWW Review: Village's INTO THE WOODS Has Moments in the Woods but No Connections BWW Review: Village's INTO THE WOODS Has Moments in the Woods but No Connections
by Jay Irwin - September 16, 2017

I'll admit, Dear Readers, that when I saw the cast list for Village Theatre's current production of Stephen Sondheim and James Lapine's classic Into the Woods I was quite excited. It was (and is) quite a list of powerhouse talent and not the usual suspects for a Village show. But Sondheim's show... (more...)
BWW Review: Charming Meta Journey with KING OF THE YEES at ACT BWW Review: Charming Meta Journey with KING OF THE YEES at ACT
by Jay Irwin - September 15, 2017

It's a world we may not know much about, that of old school Chinatown, with their family associations and insider customs. Hell, Lauren Yee grew up in this world and even she seems to be cut off from it and her Father Larry Yee runs the Yee Family Association. But that's the point of her play Kin... (more...)
BWW Review: Previously Promised SOMETHING ROTTEN! Finally Comes to 5th Ave - Worth the Wait? BWW Review: Previously Promised SOMETHING ROTTEN! Finally Comes to 5th Ave - Worth the Wait?
by Jay Irwin - September 14, 2017

Let's set the Way Back Machine to the 2014/2015 season where the 5th Avenue Theatre touted the pre-Broadway tryout of a new musical comedy called Something Rotten! . Many musical theater geeks, myself included, were quite excited at the premise of this new tuner but then the theater Gods frowned u... (more...)
BWW Review: The Williams Project's BLUES FOR MISTER CHARLIE a Masterpiece BWW Review: The Williams Project's BLUES FOR MISTER CHARLIE a Masterpiece
by Amelia Reynolds - September 10, 2017

Stop reading and find time in your schedule for this ridiculously good play at www.williamsproject.org. This show has a short run, and it's pay what you can, so there's no reason why one should not see this play.... (more...)
BWW Review: Fresh-Faced THE SOUND OF MUSIC at The Paramount : Something Good BWW Review: Fresh-Faced THE SOUND OF MUSIC at The Paramount : Something Good
by Amelia Reynolds - September 09, 2017

Rogers & Hammerstein's 'The Sound of Music' has been a musical staple for generations. Currently showing at the Paramount, this touring production has all of the snow-capped mountains, starched habits, and vocal prowess one could want. The young and eager cast makes this classic feel fresh.... (more...)
BWW Review: ArtsWest's THE WHO AND THE WHAT Doesn't Connect with the Who or the What BWW Review: ArtsWest's THE WHO AND THE WHAT Doesn't Connect with the Who or the What
by Jay Irwin - September 08, 2017

Playwright Ayad Akhtar is one of the darlings of contemporary theater with his Pulitzer Prize winning play "Disgraced" as well as his acclaimed "The Invisible Hand" (my favorite of his) getting production after production around the world. He manages to take on seriously hot button topics and expos... (more...)
BWW Review: Sound Theatre Company's GOBLIN MARKET a Feast for the Eyes and Ears BWW Review: Sound Theatre Company's GOBLIN MARKET a Feast for the Eyes and Ears
by Amelia Reynolds - August 16, 2017

'Goblin Market' is a macabre fairytale about two women struggling to fight against temptation. Based on the narrative poem by Christina Rossetti, this one-act musical is a world-premiere written by Polly Pen and Peggy Harmon. As a musical production, 'Goblin Market' tells the bulk of the narrative t... (more...)
BWW Review: Pony World's Collaborative AMERICAN ARCHIPELAGO is Bizarre, and Works as a Comedy BWW Review: Pony World's Collaborative AMERICAN ARCHIPELAGO is Bizarre, and Works as a Comedy
by Amelia Reynolds - July 30, 2017

Pony World's world premiere 'American Archipelago' is a collaborative examination of American culture and values. Written by Holly Arsenault, Kelleen C. Blanchard, Tre Calhoun, Vincent Delaney, Brendan Healy, Maggie Lee, Sara Porkalob, and Seayoung Yim, 'American Archipelago' feels more like an incu... (more...)
BWW Review: CURIOUS INCIDENT at the Paramount – A Brilliant Gut Punch BWW Review: CURIOUS INCIDENT at the Paramount – A Brilliant Gut Punch
by Jay Irwin - July 26, 2017

A few years back I had the great fortune of seeing Simon Stephens' brilliant play, "The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time" on Broadway. By intermission I was visibly shaken and by the end I was an emotional mess. But seeing it again last night for its current run at the Paramount Theat... (more...)