60-Second Review

Chelsea Packard in MEET ME IN SAINT LOUIS.

MEET ME IN SAINT LOUIS: A LIVE RADIO PLAY (Bucks County Playhouse): 60-second review

MEET ME IN SAINT LOUIS: A LIVE RADIO PLAY is based on The Kensington Stories by Sally Benson and the MGM motion picture Meet Me in Saint Louis; the musical book written by Hugh Wheeler was expertly adapted to the unique radio play style by Joe Landry. Simply, this show is fun.

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NO RESERVATIONS (PNAA): 60-second review

As the holiday season begins, so does the decorating process.  We all have those neighbors who take the time to remind us about the true story of Christmas, by displaying entire…

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EVERYMAN (Villanova Theatre): 60-second review

In the Middle Ages, the Church endorsed theatrical depictions of Church teachings to educate a mostly illiterate public. EVERYMAN is only one of five from its time that has survived to today. Villanova Theatr commissioned Mark J. Costello to translate the play from Middle English using modern language and the authenticity of rebelliousness in the punk subculture

THE DEVIL'S MUSIC.

THE DEVIL’S MUSIC (People’s Light): 60-second review

This hybrid of monologue and musical chronicles the life of Bessie Smith. Although Smith experienced troubled times in her life, THE DEVIL’S MUSIC is mostly upbeat—chock full of raunchy innuendo and humorously sexual dance moves. This makes for a perfectly lovely evening of theater…

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HANDS ACROSS VERONICA (Walking Fish/Nakedfeet): 60-second review

Lunging onto the stage with the gusto of 1000 aerobics classes, HANDS ACROSS VERONICA sets the tone for a high energy, neon fueled performance. A joint production of Walking Fish Theatre and Nakedfeet Productions, HANDS ACROSS VERONICA is primarily concerned with how women relate to food and deal with their body image,

Dan Kern and Jered McLenigan star in THE WOMAN IN BLACK at Act II Playhouse. Photo by Mark Garvin.

THE WOMAN IN BLACK: A GHOST PLAY (Act II): 60-second review

THE WOMAN IN BLACK: A GHOST PLAY is a cleverly constructed stage production by Stephen Mallatratt based on a novel by Susan Hill. It is a story within a story with Arthur Kipps (Dan Kern) seeking the assistance of an actor (Jered McLenigan) to tell his terrifying and sorrowful tale he’s compiled into a five hour manuscript. The actor encourages Kipps to tell the story through acting; the actor playing the role of Kipps and Kipps playing the roles of the people he encountered during his experiences.

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MAKESHIFT (Murmuration Theater): 60-second review

Strange games are afoot upstairs at Plays and Players. Not light or fun games, either—we’re talking full-on Don’t-talk-about-our-son-Martha! games here. Murmuration Theater’s new play MAKESHIFT throws us right into the middle of two different stories, and figures we’re smart enough to figure out what’s going on. The show doesn’t dole out much information, and when it does, it’s timed for maximum effect. Once you get enough to realize the show’s central conceit (which is quite nice, and unfolds so organically that I’d hate to spoil it), the earlier scenes come into better focus and make more sense.

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THE JERSEY DEVIL (Berserker Residents): 60-second review

The three troupe members of the FringeArts-famous Berserker Residents will do pretty much anything to get a good laugh out of the audience. Their recently re-installed THE JERSEY DEVIL (first…

Marcus Plays and Players review photo

MARCUS; OR THE SECRET OF SWEET (Plays & Players): 60-second review

Is life sweet when you live in the Louisiana Bayou before an unprecedented storm hits?  For Marcus (Eric L. Fleming), life at 16 years of age is not only sweet, but…

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COURTLY LUST: A KING ARTHUR BURLESQUE (GDP/Walking Fish): 60-second review

A tongue-in-cheek recounting of some of the sexier moments of King Arthur’s rule, COURTLY LUST attempts to do it all—just like the knights of old. Comedy, kink, and wit combine,…

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THE ELEPHANT ROOM (FringeArts): 60-second review

In the new FringeArts building, we are presented with what looks like a floating basement, decorated many decades ago, sitting on sloppily placed cinderblocks.  Out of pure gray smoke, three jokesters appear.  They…

white pines productions luckiest kid review

LUCKIEST KID (White Pines): 60-second review

Philly-based playwright Martha Kemper’s memoir-based LUCKIEST KID is an achievement just this side of brilliant. Playing the protagonist and main speaker in a story of a high-school girl who sleeps…

All photography by Daniel Kontz.

THE BROTHERS SIZE (Simpatico): 60-second review

The stories of the orishas, a pantheon of spirit personalities, has a lasting influence on the descendants of enslaved Africans throughout the Americas (The great French-Cuban hip hop band of…

Jennifer Summerfield and Peter Zielinski as Nora and Torvald in the site-specific Victorian setting of Ebenezer Maxwell Mansion's A DOLL'S HOUSE. Photo by Kyle Cassidy.

A Doll’s House (Ebenezer Maxwell Mansion): 60-second review

It’s hard to imagine a better set design for Henrik Ibsen’s devastating feminist classic than the living room of the Ebenezer Maxwell Mansion Victorian House Museum. Period furniture and details…

The Importance of Being Earnest Mauckingbird review photo

THE IMPORTANCE OF BEING EARNEST (Mauckingbird): 60-second review

Gender roles play an essential part in much classic literature. How many complex pre-1900 plots would be instantly resolved if a woman could just marry whomever she chose and live…

Photo Credit: Kate Raines of PLATE 3 Photography with Trice Baldwin and Charlie DelMarcelle

MACBETH (Commonwealth): 60-second review

MACBETH is a violent play, a feature emphasized by the contemporary military garb and extended fight choreography in the worthwhile production by Commonwealth Classic Theatre Company. But the central question which…

Katherine Perry, Ryan Walter, Danielle Adams, in Return of Confessions of a Plate and Shoe

RETURN OF CONFESSIONS OF A PLATE AND SHOE (SmokeyScout): 60-second review

Josh McIlvain’s RETURN OF CONFESSIONS OF A PLATE AND SHOE should be put in a time capsule and used by future generations as a how-to manual titled “How-to-produce-the greatest-show-ever.” Okay,…

Chris Davis The Violence of the Lambs

THE VIOLENCE OF THE LAMBS (OR THE ANIMAL VS. HUMAN WAR) (Chris Davis): 60-second review

As the established Philadelphia companies enter their long off-season, the SoLow Festival is providing a welcome dose of idiosyncratic theater at some unusual venues around town. THE VIOLENCE OF THE…

photo by Daniel Kontz

GLASS: SHATTERED (Renegade): 60-second review

Tennessee Williams’s The Glass Menagerie is described as a “memory play”: its plot an extended flashback, its theatrical pretense laid bare. GLASS: SHATTERED, Michael Durkin’s reimaging of this classic of…

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VENUS IN FUR (PTC): 60-second review

Leopold von Sacher-Masoch is known today primarily for the word derived from his name: masochism, and for his scandalous 1870 novel VENUS IN FUR, the title of a intelligent and…