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13: The Musical (Media): 60-second review

Republished by kind permission from Neals Paper. Jesse Cline has a knack for bringing out the best in performers and is especially good at developing young talent. Jason Robert Brown’s…

Keith Hamilton Cobb as Julius Caesar and Spencer Plachy as Mark Antony. Photo by Lee A. Butz

JULIUS CAESAR (PA Shakespeare): A staging come to steal away your hearts

One must praise Pennsylvania Shakespeare Festival’s CAESAR and do everything to keep it from being buried until the maximum number of people see Patrick Mulcahy’s intelligent, timely production.

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ALL THE DAYS (McCarter): An interesting failure

It takes a while for playwright Sharyn Rothstein to show you where she’s going in ALL THE DAYS. Rothstein writes sitcoms, and the formula shows.

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SEE WHAT I WANT TO SEE (11th Hour): 60-second review

Republished by kind permission from Neals Paper. SEE WHAT I WANT TO SEE receives a bravura production from Megan Nicole O’Brien and 11th Hour. But show biz brightness is not always…

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WHITE GUY ON THE BUS (Passage): 60-second review

Republished by kind permission from Neals Paper. Bruce Graham is having the most magnificent year of his playwriting career. His new works so far in 2016, Funnyman and WHITE GUY…

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THE ELIXIR OF LOVE (Opera Philadelphia): Ever may the fruit be plucked

A uniformly wonderful cast provide bright, sunshiny fun in this lively, fast-moving, exuberant staging of Gaetano Donizetti’s romantic comedy.

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KRISSY FRAELICH (Arden Cabaret): 60-second review

Fraelich proves her mettle as a singer who can move as much as impress you.

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FOREVER PLAID (Montgomery): Always on song

Of all the variety pieces that have become ensemble favorites, Stuart Ross’s musical remains the most durable.

Photo by Mark Garvin.

ALWAYS … PATSY CLINE (Walnut): Crazy for this show

Ted Swindley’s blend of a heartwarming bonding of two good ole’ gals and more than two dozen songs associated with singer Patsy Cline.

Left to right. Charlie Hudson III, Adam Greer, Jeremiah Wiggins, and Turron Kofi Alleyne star in the Crossroads Theatre Company's prodcution of FLY. Photo by Sherry Rubel.

FLY (Crossroads): Fighting for the skies

From dancing to dogfights, FLY tells the story of the Tuskagee Airmen.

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AN OCTOROON (Wilma): A melodrama, a social commentary, an experience

Beyond being entertaining and thought-provoking, Branden Jacobs-Jenkins’s AN OCTOROON is an experience

Abby Mueller (Carole King), Becky Gulsvig (Cynthia Weil), Ben Fankhauser (Barry Mann) & Liam Tobin (Gerry Goffin) in BEAUTIFUL. Photo by Joan Marcus

BEAUTIFUL: THE CAROLE KING MUSICAL (National Tour, Academy of Music): A finely woven tapestry

Douglas McGrath tribute to Carole King goes beyond the formulaic jukebox musical to tell a story that stands on its own

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DOGFIGHT (Media): Love and war

Jesse Cline’s production is solid and holds dramatic intensity throughout, but ‘Victoria Mayo elevates a fine staging into one worth remembering.

Kersten Anderson as Maria. Photo by Matthew M

THE SOUND OF MUSIC (National Tour at the Academy of Music): Politics gets its song

THE SOUND OF MUSIC is a warhorse that has been brushed and festooned in ways that belie its age, familiarity, and expectation.

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THE MOUSETRAP (McCarter): Christie brought to life

Director Adam Immerwahr and a wonderful cast make this piece that’s been running as long in London as Queen Elizabeth II alive with an energy that belies the play’s age.

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NUREYEV’S EYES (DTC): Painter and dancer onstage

Michael Mastro’s production invigorates David Rush’s play so effectively, you almost don’t notice that each of Rush’s scenes have the same paradigm and general outcome.

Photo by Matthew J. Photography

LOBBY HERO (Theatre Horizon): A web of unintended consequences

Kenneth Lonergan’s new play explores the many levels of trust.

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THE PHILLY FAN (Montgomery): The time is always ripe for a Philly sports story

Though Bruce Graham’s play is set on the eve of a potential Philadelphia sports triumph it chronicles the long-suffering, patiently impatient diehard who supports local professional teams.

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A WONDERFUL NOISE (Villanova): Noise but not wonderful

Michael Hollinger and Vance Lemkuhl’s musical is lacking in conflict and complexity.

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TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD (Media): Killing Lee’s mockingbird

In directing Christopher Sergel’s dramatic adaptation of TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD, Jesse Cline is uncharacteristically too reverential about the material.