Reviews

Lantern Theater Company's production of HENRY V (2013). Photo by Paola Nogueras

The Lantern’s noble HENRY V

HENRY V completes Shakespeare’s four-part series on Plantagenet kings of England. No longer the indolent partier, Prince Hal has inherited the English throne, but is haunted by the original sin…

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GOOD PEOPLE (Walnut): Grumpy Professor Review

GOOD PEOPLE is suffering a weak production at the venerable Walnut Street Theatre for seven weeks until April 28th. Criticizing the Walnut is like insulting the Queen, but this offering…

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60-second review: SEMINAR (PTC)

Writers will find much familiar in Theresa Rebeck’s SEMINAR, which brilliantly satirizes writerly blowhards (a proportionally large subset) and the self-seriousness necessary to pursue this art. Burnt-out, self-aggrandizing Leonard (Rufus Collins)…

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OTHELLO (Philly Shakes): Grumpy Professor Review

OTHELLO by the Philadelphia Shakespeare Theatre at 21st and Sansom, is quite an excellent show. Carmen Khan, the director, really gets perfect diction from every actor in every word of…

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60-second review: OTHELLO (Philly Shakes)

In most of Shakespeare’s tragedies, the characters are overtaken by the swirl of events, following fate to their bloody end. A notable exception is OTHELLO, now onstage at Philadelphia Shakespeare…

Photo credit: © James Jackson – raveneyes.com

Another entertaining stay at George F. Walker’s SUBURBAN MOTEL (Walking Fish)

Not a lot has changed since last time Walking Fish Theatre checked into George F. Walker’s Suburban Motel, for November’s PROBLEM CHILD. The room is still grotty, the management is…

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Theatre Confetti is On Target with EDITH CAN SHOOT THINGS AND HIT THEM

Stretched along the long wall of Old City’s Power Plant Basement, Theatre Confetti’s set for EDITH CAN SHOOT THINGS AND HIT THEM evokes the emptiness and expanse of the desolate…

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A Hollywood Wasteland: New City’s HURLYBURLY

“When shall we three meet again, in thunder, lightning or in rain? When the hurlyburly’s done, when the battle’s lost and won.” —William Shakespeare, MACBETH ARTIE: Eddie, can I ask…

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60-second review: ENDGAME (Arden)

Samuel Beckett’s ENDGAME (now onstage at the Arden Theatre) is empty and confusing; the action confined, the pacing slow. For all this, it’s a great play: a humorous exploration of…

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Paradise Park (Idiopathic Ridiculopathy): Men in Dresses

If your favorite part of Willie Wonka and the Chocolate Factory was the creepy boat ride or if you even remember that scene with a tingle of cinematic delight right down in…

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ASSASSIN (InterAct): Grumpy Professor Review

Although ASSASSIN was directed by Seth Reichgott, InterAct Theatre Company is its producing-artistic director, Seth Rozin, who runs a tight ship. ASSASSIN was okay but it was not enough of a play,…

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60-second review: EQUUS (Curio)

Peter Shaffer’s EQUUS premiered in 1973, and its age shows. A psycho-sexual exploration of insanity, spirituality, and conformity, it continues to appeal to generations of teenagers who identify with Alan…

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60-second review: THE AMISH PROJECT (Simpatico/Renegade)

After a solid run from upstart Renegade Company, THE AMISH PROJECT is getting a revamped co-production with star indie company, Simpatico Theatre Project. Janice Rowland repeats her virtuoso one-woman performance…

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InterAct’s ASSASSIN Hits Hard

Every week there seems to be another news story about the dangers of NFL football. The average career length for an outfield offensive player (running back, wide receiver) is under…

photo by Alexander Iziliaev

ASSISTANCE (Wilma): 60-second review

Cutting close to the bone, Lesley Headland’s ASSISTANCE is a protest, as provocative as Sophie Treadwell’s Machinal (1928), exposing the Darwinian-exploitative nature of the 2013 job market. Irony sucker punched…

Megan Bellwoar (standing) and Mary Martello (seated) as Maureen and Mag Folan in Lantern Theater Company’s production of Martin McDonagh’s THE BEAUTY QUEEN OF LEENANE. Photo by Mark Garvin.

A Darker Emerald Isle: Lantern’s THE BEAUTY QUEEN OF LEENANE

The Lantern Theater Company’s production of THE BEAUTY QUEEN OF LEENANE completes its presentation of Martin McDonagh’s Leenane Trilogy, following 2007’s THE LONESOME WEST and 2011’s A SKULL IN CONNEMARA….

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Sharing a Cerveza with THE DRUNK LION

“My mom always told me to be careful accepting invitations, but how often does a Mexican lion invite you to a cantina?” Philadelphia has bright new playwriting talent in Chris…

John Douglas Thompson as SATCHMO.

SATCHMO AT THE WALDORF (Wilma): A genius performance by John Douglas Thompson

For some time I’ve read effusive descriptions of John Douglas Thompson’s acting. They are all true—he is an incredible talent. In SATCHMO AT THE WALDORF, now in a brief run at the Wilma Theater, Thompson brilliantly portrays Louis Armstrong, the musician’s hard-nosed talent manager, and other characters, switching diction and mannerism so completely that he seems to inhabit different bodies with each change.

Mary Tuomanen in 2013's Pookie Goes Grenading. Photo by Johanna Austin.

The Filling for Your Existential Doughnut Hole: Azuka’s POOKIE GOES GRENADING

Behind a thick veneer of such entertainingly hilarious absurdity, Azuka Theatre’s world premiere production of J.C. Lee’s POOKIE GOES GRENADING explores the self-serious commitment necessary to produce any works of artistic expression. Lee’s script is theatrical comedy at its best, fast-paced fun with seriously smart dialog and perceptive underpinnings.

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Walking Fish’s PROBLEM CHILD is One To Love

Kensington’s Walking Fish Theatre continues its presentation of George F. Walker’s Suburban Motel series with PROBLEM CHILD. Walker’s cycle features six plays set in the same seedy motel room. Walking…