Julius in rehearsal for MICROMANIA

Micromaniac: Interview with Julius Ferraro about his new work, Philadelphia theater, and how well-paid critics are

Julius Ferraro talks about his new show, MICROMANIA, and how writing about theater has changed the way he looks at it.

The Daughters of King Lear - James Archer

Why present an all-female production of KING LEAR? Revolution Shakespeare’s director lays down a persuasive case ahead of their reading

On Monday, May 12, 2014 (the day after Mother’s Day), upstart local Shakespeare company Revolution Shakespeare will present a staged reading of the Bard’s classic KING LEAR. The reading’s director, Samantha Bellomo tells Phindie what excites her about the decision to give the reading an all-female cast.

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GINT (EgoPo): Ibsen as American folklorist

Romulus Linney’s GINT, now in an engaging staging by EgoPo Productions, does an admirable job of translating this modernist classic for contemporary audiences. Linney reworks the story so it seems to have been lifted straight from the annals of American folklore.

Frank Ermilio and Jessica Orsini star in Thespionage's inaugural production.

UPPER MIDDLE CLASS WHITE (Thespionage): A DIY romcom

Thespionage Theater Company trumpets itself as a ‘pay what you can’ theater company; every ticket is priced by the audience member, and every dollar made is put into the budget for the next show. It’s an interesting new approach to small-theater funding in an age where the little guys are increasingly struggling against larger marketing machines, dwindling grant money, and thinly spread audiences of theatergoers.

Maria Konstantinidis stars as Aldonza/Dulcinea in Act II Playhouse's production of "Man of La Mancha," now playing through June 8, 2014. Photo by Bill D'Agostino.

MAN OF LA MANCHA (Act II): 60-second review

MAN OF LA MANCHA is a play within a play. The production is the clear result of what happens when a group of professionals pour their talents into a common goal.

Aetna Gallagher and Brian McCann in Curio Theatre Company's OEDIPUSSY.

OEDIPUSSY (Curio): Shenanigans, tomfoolery and ballyhoo reign

OEDIPUSSY isn’t something to analyze, it’s just something to enjoy— an antidote to life’s heavy stuff. Appealingly physical and comically overwrought, it’s tons of fun. The most amazing thing about this lunatic version is that the epic tragic story actually emerges through all the clowning, sight gags and laughter.

Amanda Grove, Jessica Gruver, and Amanda Schoonover star in Luna Theater Company’s BRAINPEOPLE (Photo credit: Gregory Scott Campbell)

BRAINPEOPLE (Luna): A Haunting Invitation to Dinner

Concluding its 2013-14 themed season “Once upon a Time,” Luna Theater Company’s 80-minute Philadelphia premiere of BRAINPEOPLE, told in real time, is mysterious, disturbing, and challenging; but then director Gregory Scott Campbell was never one to avoid a challenge

The ensemble (Dave Jadico, Alex Bechtel, Aimé Donna Kelly, Scott Greer, and Jennifer Childs) plays “The Spinners” in 1812 Productions’ THIS IS THE WEEK THAT IS (Photo credit: Mark Garvin)

THIS IS THE WEEK THAT IS (1812 Productions): Now a Musical and Better than Ever!

Lampooning everything from Hillary Clinton ‘not’ running for President in 2016 to NJ Governor Chris Christie ‘not’ closing the George Washington Bridge, 1812 Productions’ THIS IS THE WEEK THAT IS delivers non-stop laughs in a fast-paced ensemble-devised review of today’s important issues.

Mary Tuomanen video preview

Video Preview: Hitchcock’s THE 39 STEPS at Theatre Horizon

Dunk the master of mystery in a vat of absurdity and you have Alfred Hitchcock’s THE 39 STEPS, a zany adaptation of the 1935 movie. Norristown’s Theatre Horizon is staging…

Chelsea Murphy and Magda San Milan in WE TOUCHED IT. Photo by Kate Raines, Plate3Photography.

REMIX FESTIVAL (fidget): The Unseen Hand

Remix Festival, hosted at , is curated by Annie Wilson and Susan Rethorst, creator of the remixing concept (she calls it “wrecking”). The concept behind the festival is that on each of the four nights, three or four artists present original dance works. Then, after a short break, other artists present “remixed” versions these dances which they’ve had two days to prepare.

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The fault, dear Brutus, Act III: Makoto Hirano interviews Lantern AD Charles McMahon about “Super Racist” Julius Caesar

Makoto Hirano asks Lantern artistic director Charles McMahon some tough questions about the “Super Racist” Julius Caesar. And a clearly contrite McMahon does his best to explain the process that lead to the company’s misguided choices.

Ben Grinberg rehearsing COMMUNITAS at Penn Treaty Park. Photo credit Justin Rose

Communitas Organizer: Interview with Ben Grinberg about his dance circus theater

Together with collaborator Nick Gillette, Ben Grinberg founded Almanac Dance Circus Theatre to offer production of his unique brand of acrobatic theater. Almanac’s inaugural show, Communitas, launches this May 22-24 at Christ Church Neighborhood House. Phindie asked Ben a few questions about the show and his new company.

Ann Crumb, dressed like an exotic bird, ready to take off in her final scene in Sunset Boulevard at the Media Theatre. Photo by Mark Jordan.

SUNSET BOULEVARD (Media Theatre): Ann Crumb as Norma Desmond, the delusional diva

Few singers can do what Ann Crumb can do, namely to transform herself in such versatile ways that people follow her wherever she goes, whether she performs on Broadway or in Media. Crumb, a depowered female King Lear, dominated every scene of SUNSET BOULEVARD in her own dream castle.

Patch Theatre Company’s ME AND MY SHADOW, in collaboration with PAPAYA (Photo credit: Courtesy of the Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts)

INTERNATIONAL CHILDREN’S FESTIVAL (Annenberg Center): A Fun-Filled 30th-Birthday Celebration!

The oldest of its kind in our country, the Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts’ INTERNATIONAL CHILDREN’S FESTIVAL celebrates its 30th birthday in 2014. With a roster of affordable family-friendly presentations of theater, puppetry, and music from around the world, along with a hands-on Fun Zone filled with interactive cultural experiences in the Center’s outdoor plaza (or, in the case of inclement weather, inside in the lobby), this springtime tradition is a great way to introduce kids to the arts, and to reintroduce adults to their magic!

Philadelphia theater calendar

Philadelphia Theater Calendar: May 2014

January | February | March | April | May | June July | August | September | October | November | December The Train Driver. By Athol Fugard. April 10–May 4, 2014. Lantern Theater Company, 923 Ludlow Street.  lanterntheater.org. Dr. Seuss’s The Cat in…

Adrienne Mackey

Checking in with Adrienne Mackey: Musing on the future of theater arts and artists

Adrienne Mackey, 32, is the artistic director of Swim Pony Performing Arts, a performing arts company that prides itself on presenting work that is “loud, strange, and never seen before on earth.”

the renegade company star wars

May the Fourth Be With You: Renegade Star Wars theater event coincides with announcement of Star Wars VII cast

In the vein of last years William Shakespeare’s Star Wars by local publisher Quirk Books, The Renegade Company is holding a one-off Star Wars themed event to raise money for its upcoming productions. Costumes! Shakespeare! Lightsabers! Faux-Southern theater-rockers Jawbone Junctions!

Help us Renegade, your our only hope.

Roni Koresh, photo by Frank Bicking

No regrets in Roni Koresh’s PROMISES

At rehearsal last week putting the finishing touches on his new dance piece ‘Promises I Never Meant to Keep,’ choreographer Roni Koresh was bleary eyed, wondering if the coffee he was drinking was from three days ago, but otherwise thoroughly engaged

FringeArts presents world premiere of Nichole Canuso solo work "Midway Avenue," May 2-4. Photo by Peggy Woolsey

Midway Avenue (Nichole Canuso): An interview with the artist

Last fall, Nichole Canuso Dance Company presented The Garden, which wowed its intimate audiences—only six viewers per show—by weaving them deeply into the action of the dance, and outnumbering them two to one.

From left:  Mary Tuomanen (as Irina) Sarah Sanford (as Olga),and Katharine Powell (as Masha) as the ‘Three Sisters’ in the Arden Theatre Company production of Anton Chekhov’s play. (Photo courtesy of Mark Garvin)

Conversations on Chekhov: What gimmicks? The Arden’s THREE SISTERS has a lasting effect

In September of 1900 Anton Chekhov confessed in a letter to his actress-wife Olga Knipper: “I find it very difficult to write THREE SISTERS, much more difficult than any other of my…