Scene Stealers-Week Ending August 2, 2014

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Here are this week’s Scene Stealers! Congrats to all the honorees!

Kathryn Barrett-Gaines as Clelia Breaking Plates in
Parlor Room Theatre’s The Nerd

Kathryn Barrett-Gaines) (Clelia) smashing a plate. Photo courtesy of Parlor Room Theater.

Kathryn Barrett-Gaine (Clelia) smashing a plate. Photo courtesy of Parlor Room Theater.

“Also, very amusing are the Walgrave’s; Ticky (Herb Poe), Clelia (Kathryn Barrett-Gaines), and Thor (Caleb Smith). The Walgrave clan is a spectacle you can only see to believe. Each actor having their moments to shine though the first act, I especially enjoyed [Kathryn] Barrett-Gaines in her neurotic plate breaking exercise, her only release from the foolishness that surrounds her.”--Anne Vandercook

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Lili Chao as Balance Goddess Assembling a Mobile at Cirque du Soleil’s Amaluna at National Harbor

Lili Chao performs at the 'Cirque Du Soleil Amaluna' dress rehearsal at Citi Field on March 19, 2014 in New York City. Photo by Noam Galai/WireImage.

Lili Chao performs at the ‘Cirque Du Soleil’s ‘Amaluna’ dress rehearsal at Citi Field on March 19, 2014 in New York City. Photo by Noam Galai/WireImage.

“Also on her own is Lili Chao as Balance Goddess, who assembles before our eyes, simply by balancing one wooden rib upon another, a huge mobile that looks like a fish skeleton sculpted by Alexander Calder. Her pace is slow and steady, precarious piece by piece. And as time seems to stop, the audience dares not breathe.” –[Watch it below]. -John Stoltenberg

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Kevin Kulp and Christopher Mueller Singing “You’re Nothing Without Me” at Revenge of the Understudies at Signature Theatre

(l to R): Kevin Kulp and Christopher Mueller at Signature Theatre.

(l to R): Kevin Kulp and Christopher Mueller at Signature Theatre. Photo by Annabel Williams.

“The evening finished on a very high note with Kevin Kulp singing a duet with surprise guest, Christopher Mueller, whom Kulp had understudied in Miss Saigon last fall. Kulp joked that Mueller never missed a show to give Kevin his big moment and it was time to take his revenge. They sang a sensational duet, “You’re Nothing Without Me” from City of Angels, in which the understudy ably proved himself worthy of his role. In a nutshell, that was what this wonderful tradition of Signature honoring its faithful understudies was all about.”-Douglas Lloyd

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Darius Pierce as Dev and Kimberly Gilbert as Mash Singing a Duet in Stupid Fucking Bird at Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company

Darius Pierce and Kimberly Gilbert in 'Stupid Fucking Bird.' Photo by Stan Barouh.

Darius Pierce (Dev) and Kimberly Gilbert (Mash) in ‘Stupid Fucking Bird.’ Photo by Stan Barouh.

“Dev is played with wit and longing by Darius Pierce. We first meet Dev at the play’s opening during an odd conversation he has with Mash about whose poverty is worse (if either were poor we would never otherwise know). We grow fond of him in later scenes as he continues proclaiming his love to Mash despite her rejection of him. When, at the beginning of Act III, Dev and Mash Kimberly Gilbert] sing a sweet, endearing duet together, a duet deserving of America’s Got Talent, we bow our heads and clap our hands to the both of them for finally making art and life work.-Robert Michael Oliver.

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Maggie Robertson (Dani's Mother).  Photo courtesy of Unexpected Stage Company.

Maggie Robertson (Mother). Photo courtesy of Unexpected Stage Company.

Maggie Robertson (Mother) singing “The Sun Still Rose” at Dani Girl at Unexpected Stage Company.

“Dani’s mother (Maggie Robertson) oozes both compassion and her own struggles to continue to believe in fairy tales and happy endings. When it is clear that Dani is dying, Robertson faces the impossibility of fairy tales coming true in her heart-wrenching song, “The Sun Still Rose.” “-Bev Fleisher

From Joel Markowitz: I can’t remember when one show had three Scene Stealers, but Dani Girl has even more Scene Stealing performances that could fill up an entire article. I saw the musical last night and I am still filled with emotion as I write this. When Maggie sang “The Sun Still Rose”- a beautiful and heart-wrenching song – I kept thinking that I couldn’t remember  when a song in a musical moved me more. As the heavenly playing from Cellist Katie Chambers  shimmered in the background – my heartstrings were tugged. I still hear it and can’t get it out of  my mind.

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Joshua Simon as Raph singing “Trivial Pursuit of Death” in Dani Girl at Unexpected Stage Company

Caroline Wolfson (Dani and Joshua Simon (Raph). Photo by Dave Lewis.

Caroline Wolfson (Dani) and Joshua Simon (Raph). Photo by Dave Lewis.

‘[Joshua Simon] displayed the whole package of talent and skills necessary for success in musical theater. From the first moment he leapt on the stage attired in white pants, a pink shirt and pink and white butterfly wings, he had the audience in his pocket. His vocals, dancing, sarcasm and character sketches blossom early in his first solo, “Trivial Pursuit of Death.”-Bev Fleisher

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Caroline Wolfson (Dani) and Marty (Zach Brewster-Geisz) Sing “Going to Heaven’ in Dani Girl at Unexpected Stage Company

Caroline Wolfson (Dani) and Zach Brewster-Geisz (Marty). Photo by Kate Erin Gibson.

Caroline Wolfson (Dani) and Zach Brewster-Geisz (Marty). Photo by Kate Erin Gibson.

“I loved when Marty convincingly turns his bed into a spaceship on which he and Dani have an eventful trip to heaven, only to be turned away by the gatekeeper, Darth Cancer, a less likable version of Raph. “Going to Heaven” showed the hopeful side of the endeavor…”-Bev Fleisher

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AND SPECIAL KUDOS TO… Jane Squier Bruns as Grandie in The Veil at Quotidian Theatre Company.

From left: Jane Squier Bruns (Grandie) and Michele Osherow (Madeleine). Photo by St. Johnn Blondell.

From left: Jane Squier Bruns (Grandie) and Michele Osherow (Madeleine). Photo by St. Johnn Blondell.

“And finally, we have the gem of the show, hidden in plain sight. Jane Squier Bruns as the elderly matriarch of the aristocrats (Grandie) has less than half a dozen lines. She sits on the stage silently, until needed, and delivers each of her lines with perfect timing and absolute commitment. She is witty, poignant, and beautiful in turns and is truly a joy to watch.”-Cyle Durkee

LINKS

Anne Vandercook’s review of The Nerd at Parlor Room Theatre.

John Stoltenberg’s review of Amaluna.

Meet the Cast of Unexpected Stage Company’s ‘Dani Girl’: Caroline Wolfson, Joshua Simon, Maggie Robertson, and Zach Brewster-Geisz by Joel Markowitz.

Bev Fleisher’s review of Dani Girl.

Cyle Durkee’s review of The Veil.

Robert Michael Oliver’s review of Stupid Fucking Bird.

The Playwright’s Playground: Playwright Aaron Posner Talks About Inspiration, Adaptations and That ‘Stupid Fucking Bird,’ by Sydney-Chanele Dawkins.

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