Christopher Haig

6.Arnold_doesnt_like_it

Theater in Sketch: HIR (Simpatico)

Simpatico Theatre Company’s production of HIR by Taylor Mac challenges audiences to reconsider preconceptions of gender identity

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HIR (Simpatico): We are all everything

Author’s note: Taylor Mac uses “judy” as a gender pronoun. This review reflects Mac’s preference. Taylor Mac’s work is unwieldy and absurdist, challenging and unsettling. These elements often work to…

Carla Belver, Kevin Meehan and Nancy Boykin in JOHN by Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Annie Baker. Running at Arden Theatre Company through February 26. Photo by Mark Garvin.

JOHN (Arden): Things that haunt

There remains something compelling about ghost stories. Annie Baker’s JOHN demonstrates why: our past haunts just as well as any poltergeist.

1. Simpatico, TIME, BB, CC-H, KN, phto Plate 3

TIME IS ON OUR SIDE (Simpatico): Philadelphia’s living history of gay pride and social progress

A world-premiere commission filled with humor and heart considers the history and progress of gay rights in Philadelphia through the lens of a local podcast and the discovery of a revealing artifact.

Tribe of Fools, TWO STREET, phto Kate Raines

TWO STREET: A TALE OF STAR-CROSSED MUMMERS (Tribe of Fools): Fringe Review 12.2

Shakespeare meets South Philly in Tribe of Fools’ TWO STREET, a high-energy take on Romeo and Juliet through the perspective of a contemporary gay couple. But here the tale of…

(Left to right) Adam Hoyak, Nicholas Park, Billy Kametz, Michael Linden, and Robert Hager in 11th Hour’s ALTAR BOYZ (Photo credit: John Flak)

ALTAR BOYZ (11th Hour): Raising the Praise!

The fast-paced spoof about a boy band saving the souls of an audience of sinners on the last stop of their “Raise the Praise” tour is filled with witty references to the Bible, the Passion of Christ, and the Catholic liturgy. The Boyz—aptly named Matthew, Mark, Luke, Juan, and Abraham–proselytize to prospective believers in real time through their songs, employing post-modern technology, current slang, and choreographed moves that gently skewer such popular acts as the Backstreet Boys and ‘N Sync.

Simpatico’s THE MEEP PROJECT by Ed Swidey. Illustration by Robert Berry.

Simpatico’s THE MEEP PROJECT Brings Innovation to All-Ages Theater

THE MEEP PROJECT is a charming collaboration between playwright Ed Swidey and Simpatico Theatre Project. The world premiere development piece (which looked as fully developed as any original production I’ve seen!) employs new methods of storytelling, using movement and sound in place of language.