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The Winter’s Tale (Comments Off)

November 22, 2014 • Category: CURRENT SHOWS, Matthew Wrobel, REVIEWS, REVIEWS BY, Theatre Reviews

However, all of this is lost in the final two acts, light-hearted and full of slap stick. It’s challenging for actors and audience alike to transition from the first portion of this play to the conclusion. The final two acts attempt to find a way to unconvincingly wrap up the tragedy of the first three acts in a tidy bow. However, the cast has the utmost fun attempting to do so. From the beginning of act four, the cast reminds its audience aggressively that “Now is the time to laugh!” Such coddling proved difficult for me. Still, several performances shine through, but the cast could not rise above the uneven source material that is Shakespeare’s Winter Tale.

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Porgy and Bess at the Lyric Opera of Chicago (Comments Off)

It was one of those very special nights that can only in happen live, onstage. Over three thousand five hundred people gather to witness an ambitious and thoroughly beautiful production of Gershwin’s masterpiece, the American Folk Opera Porgy And Bess. For me, it was one of the most enjoyable nights I’ve ever spent in the theatre, just like the production of this wonder piece I saw in 2008. The Lyric Opera of Chicago’s second production of Porgy And Bess ranks among the finest opera I’ve seen to date!It is sheer perfection!

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Tamer of Horses (Comments Off)

William Mastrosimone’s 1985 tale of violence and the quest for personal redemption, Tamer of Horses, is still, unfortunately, relevant in 2014. Teatro Vista has mounted a fantastically powerful drama fueled by extraordinary performances and tight flowing direction by Ron OH Parson.

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Capriccio (Comments Off)

…Capriccio was referred to by Strauss as “conversation piece” rather than a serious drama, is an opera within an opera and an appreciation of the wonders of music over words (lyrics) that fuels opera.

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Great Expectations (Comments Off)

As a Dickens adaptation, the show is long, and I wish the evening performances didn’t start so late. There are a few plays-within-the-play that could have been left out. Still, anyone who isn’t satisfied just seeing A Christmas Carol this winter would do well to give Great Expectations a try. Given the challenges of a smaller theatre, many of Gerace’s solutions are ingenious. The cast seems to make up far more people than they do, and the whole show is a celebration of the imagination

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Women At War (Comments Off)

Women At War also speaks to the unique problems women face in the military. From being basically unwelcome by the male military establishment to the different stress levels women experience to the constant embarrassment to physical assaults (by fellow troupers) to the basic loneliness and fears of combat zone life, women are still learning survival techniques that present more problems than males ever faced. The mixing of genders in stressful and fearful circumstances often leads to victimization of women personal.

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Strandline (Comments Off)

Playwright Abbie Spallen has a bit of McPherson’s wacky characters, some of Friel’s monologues with a dose of McDonagh’s dark humor in her plays. Strandline is a funny yet searing work that deals with the mourning for Mairin’s (Kirsten Fitzgerald) dead husband who drowns in sight of Mairin and town’s folk during a wedding celebration in a seaside town on the Northern Ireland border. It seems that Mairin’s husband drowned trying to save some French tourists.

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