Theater

The best source for independent coverage of Philadelphia theater.

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New City’s TERRORISM Presents a Sardonic Look at Modern Life

Passenger: It’s madness — what sort of an age do we live in? You don’t feel safe anywhere now, only at home… First Passenger: At home? Passenger: Only at home…

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A PLAY, A PIE AND A PINT: Three Things We Can All Like

As a lover of theater, beer, and meat-filled pastries, I’ve been excited by the ads and positive buzz about this series from Tiny Dynamite for a few months. When I…

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Philadelphia’s BRAT Productions makes the theater of the absurd even more absurd

Eugene Ionesco’s absurdest masterpiece The Bald Soprano (“La Cantatrice chauve”) ends as it begins: with an Englishwoman talking about french fried potatoes. Her husband isn’t listening, but this failure of communication is small…

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Inis Nua Finds a Home with LITTLE GEM

Since 2004, Inis Nua Theatre Company has been entertaining Philadelphia audiences with provocative new Irish and British plays, staged at venues around the city. The company has already marked a…

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A Valentines Playdate in Philadelphia

“First dates are stressful,” says the postcard for Matchbox Theatre Projects Valentines Day special,The Playdaters. As we all know, the 100th date can be just as fraught. Whether it’s your…

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African American History Month, onstage in Philadelphia

I’m writing this on February 4th, on what would be Rosa Parks 99th birthday. Parks herself is represented onstage in Philadelphia tonight, at the end of the musical The Scottsboro Boys at…

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Fun for a Night, Hell for a Life: Luna’s Toxically Humorous BACHELORETTE

We’ve all met someone like her: the beautiful ex–prom queen with a cutting wit, overconfidence, and the forgivable tendency to say something hopelessly stupid and insensitive. In Leslye Headland’s BACHELORETTE,…

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Interview with James C. Tolbert III

James Tolbert has decades of experience on stages in Philadelphia and around the country, most recently as the lead in August Wilson’s Joe Turner’s Come and Gone at Plays and…

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WHY TORTURE IS WRONG AND THE PEOPLE WHO LOVE THEM (New City): Side-Splitting Satire on a Timely Topic

Written by Durang (a Bucks County native) in 2009, in the aftermath of Abu Ghraib and in the midst of America’s unending involvement in the Middle East, WHY TORTURE IS WRONG, AND THE PEOPLE WHO LOVE THEM will have you howling, as well as questioning the sanity of our elected officials, national security advisers, and the growing reactionary fringe of our voting populace (if you don’t already).

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Feliz Navidad! UN VIAJE: A CHRISTMAS JOURNEY at Kensington’s Walking Fish Theatre

UN VIAJE—A CHRISTMAS JOURNEY is running at Walking Fish Theatre in Kensington (Philadelphia), PA through December 30. (Photo courtesy of B. Someday Productions at Walking Fish Theatre) UN VIAJE: A…

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Annual Philadelphia show salutes seminal TV comedy

Now in its sixth year, 1812 Productions’ This Is The Week That Is has become a cherished Philadelphia theater tradition. Described by 1812 artistic director Jennifer Childs as “the Carol Burnett Show…

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Wild Bunch in Wild Punch in Kensington

California transplant John Rosenberg opened the Papermill Theater in an old (you guessed it) paper mill in the Kensington neighborhood of Philadelphia in 2010. Since then, it’s been host a number of…

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A Versatile Acting Showcase in The Renegade Company’s THE AMISH PROJECT

“What happens to a person when they live in a world where you can’t believe anything and the things you don’t want to believe are actually true?” Janice Rowland stars…

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A theater which has been destroyed…

Just came across this quote by the great Spanish poet and playwright Federico Garcia Lorca: The theater is one of the most expressive and useful instruments for educating a country;…

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Meanwhile . . . a noir-spoof mystery at the Ruba Ballroom

Philadelphia has quite the noir pedigree. It was home to William McGivern, author of the source material to such hard-boiled classics as Rogue Cop and The Big Heat, and David Goodis, whose Philadelphia-set novel Down There was…

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InterAct’s THE HOW AND THE WHY is Well Written and Full of Ideas

“It’s yours, you created it, you gave birth to it. Don’t throw it away because you’re frightened of the implications.” Zelda (Janis Dardaris), an award-winning evolutionary biologist, is telling Rachel…

Mark Rothko ponders one of his canvases. Commissioned for the Four Seasons in NYC, the cycle is on display at the Tate Modern in London, and worth a visit.

“I see dead artists”: Haley Joel Osment returns to Philly in PTC’s RED

Filmmaker M. Night Shyamalan has used Philadelphia and its environs as the setting for all of his critically acclaimed films, most famously his 1999 breakthrough movie, The Sixth Sense, which…

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An overview of the Philly theater scene

Philadelphia theater is rich in its diversity and output, with over 100 companies presenting thousands of performances every year. The city boasts a long-standing tradition of theatrical production—Center City’s Walnut…

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Tracy Letts’s AUGUST: OSAGE COUNTY…A Modern Great at the Arden

AUGUST: OSAGE COUNTY bookends with characters quoting T. S. Elliot’s “The Hollow Men.” “Life is very long,” begins Beverly Weston (David Howey), the alcoholic patriarch of an Oklahoma household, talking…

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Best of Philadelphia Theater, 2010-2011

The Barrymore Awards ceremony is tonight, and I’m not there, but that doesn’t mean I don’t have my own opinions about the best actors and productions of last season. I…