Author Archive | Johnna Leary

Amazed drag queen with tattoos in theater

Review: ‘La Cage aux Folles’ at Other Voices Theatre

With music and lyrics by Jerry Herman and a book by Harvey Fierstein, La Cage aux Folles running at Other Voices Theatre is a splendid spectacle stuffed with laughs and many poignant moments about the simple subject of love. Superbly directed by Susan Thornton, the show features a hilariously heartwarming collection of emotionally powerful and […]

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Review: ‘Hamlet’ at Whiskey-Shine & Pantomime in Shepherdstown, WV

The recently opened Whiskey-Shine & Pantomime theater organization in Shepherdstown makes a stunning debut with an updated, modern day, and outdoor adaptation of William Shakespeare’s Hamlet. Directed by Kyra Soleil, the production displays many bold choices and exceptional performances in a highly unique atmosphere. A summary for those not familiar with the famous play; Hamlet […]

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Review: ‘Sherlock Holmes: The Final Adventure’ at the Old Opera House Theatre Company

One of the opening lines to last evening’s performance of Sherlock Holmes: The Final Adventure, uttered by the world’s most famous detective, was “You see, but you do not observe.” Audiences who observe this expertly crafted thriller at the Old Opera House will not be disappointed. Sherlock Holmes: The Final Adventure written by Steven Dietz […]

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Review: ‘Rock of Ages’ at the Apollo Civic Theatre

Get ready to rock out at the Apollo Civic Theatre with a rocking and energetic production of Rock of Ages! With a book by Chris D’Arenzo and orchestrations and arrangements by Ethan Popp, this jukebox musical features thirty memorable hits from the 1980s. When small town girl Sherrie arrives in L.A, she has big dreams […]

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Review: ‘Dog Sees God’ at East Street Arts Center

We all have those childhood cartoons and characters we loved in our youth, whose innocence and wholesome comedy are branded in our memories and popular culture. But what happens if those wholesome childhood characters grow up to become….rebellious teenagers with teenage problems and drama? In Dog Sees God: Confessions of a Teenage Blockhead, written by […]

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Review: ‘The Pirates of Penzance’ at Shenandoah Summer Music Theatre

The Shenandoah Summer Music Theatre’s (SSMT) production of Gilbert and Sullivan’s The Pirates of Penzance breathes fresh and hysterically contemporary life into an older operetta. Brilliantly directed by Jeremy Scott Blaustein, with very crisp musical direction from Karen Keating, The Pirates of Penzance is an 1879 operetta with music by Arthur Sullivan and book and lyrics […]

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Review: ‘Sweeney Todd’ at Shenandoah Summer Music Theatre

  In an interestingly unusual choice for the typical light-hearted summer stock musicals at Shenandoah Summer Music Theatre, Sweeney Todd is an exceptional production with strong performances and crisp, exceedingly clever directorial choices. Brilliantly directed and choreographed by Edward Carignan, with impeccable music direction from Thomas Albert, Sweeney Todd is a fantastic production. Set in Victorian era London with […]

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Interviews from The Woods: Inside ‘Into the Woods JR.’ at Washington County Playhouse Dinner Theater

Be careful what you wish for! This weekend, Into the Woods JR. opens at the Washington County Playhouse Dinner Theater and Children’s Theater, featuring talented students from the tri-state area. Into the Woods JR. is Stephen Sondheim’s classic fairy-tale musical mash-up, with the book by James Lapine adapted into a ninety-minute version for young performers. […]

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Review: ‘Skin Deep’ at the Old Opera House

Skin Deep at the Old Opera House proves love comes in all shapes and sizes and the message is easily displayed with some outstanding performances from the small ensemble cast in this clever romantic comedy. Written by Jon Lonoff and directed by Steven Brewer, Skin Deep features a blind date between loveable and awkward, full-figured […]

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Review: ‘Dogfight’ at the Apollo Civic Theatre

The cast of Dogfight at the Apollo Civic Theatre tackles an unusually difficult subject, especially for a musical, with great aplomb, assisted by excellent direction and unique technical effects. With a book by Peter Duchan and music and lyrics by Ben J. Pasek and Justin Paul, Dogfight is a musical set from 1963-1967 in the […]

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Review: ‘Our Town’ at the Apollo Civic Theatre

One of the American theatrical classics, Our Town, written by Thornton Wilder, and well-directed by Amanda Hartman, comes to life in a charmingly simplistic and emotionally resonant production at the Apollo Civic Theatre. Written by Thornton Wilder, Our Town is a slice of small town life from 1901- 1913 in Grover’s Corners. The town citizens […]

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Review: ‘Stupid F**king Bird’ at Maryland Ensemble Theatre

Written by Aaron Posner and “sort of adapted from Anton Chekhov’s The Seagull,” Stupid F**king Bird is a highly imaginative and humorous depiction of the love triangles and life lessons between younger and older actors and artists on vacation at the lake shore. At the heart of the story, playwright Con loves his starring actress Nina, […]

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Review: ‘One Slight Hitch’ at the Old Opera House

One Slight Hitch at The Old Opera House, directed by Glenn Frail, is a wonderfully romantic comedy. In this delightfully sharp farce by Lewis Black, it’s 1981 and Courtney’s wedding day in a perfect suburban neighborhood has arrived. Her mother, Delia, is making sure every last detail is perfect.. right up until the doorbell rings. […]

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Review: ‘St. Nicholas’ at Washington Stage Guild

Theater critics can sometimes be vicious and bloodthirsty…… and that’s before one of them gets employed by a bloodsucking vampire in the Washington Stage Guild production of St. Nicholas. This wonderfully witty and poignant one-man show takes an unusual premise and releases both side-splitting comedy and thought-provoking questions. An unnamed Irish theater critic introduces us […]

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