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Author Archive | Tim Dunleavy

Leah Walton. Photo by Matthew J Photography.

Review: ‘2.5 Minute Ride’ at Theatre Horizon

There’s a lot going on in Lisa Kron’s life. There’s her brother’s upcoming marriage, a ceremony that’s being held at a Jewish community center with “a wonderful design out of a 1972 James Bond movie.” There’s her family’s annual trip to Cedar Point, the Ohio amusement park famous for having over a dozen roller coasters. […]

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Jessica M. Johnson and Walter DeShields. Photo by Kathryn Raines, Plate | 3 Photography.

Review: ‘The Swallowing Dark’ at Inis Nua Theatre Company

“Your status has expired.” For Canaan Muponda, these are the most fearsome words imaginable. A refugee from Zimbabwe, Canaan has spent the last five years living in Liverpool with his young son. Now, in order to avoid deportation back to Africa, he has to prove to Martha Sullivan, a government caseworker, that staying in Britain […]

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Nikki Van Cassele and Alex Kunz. Photo by ClintonBphotography.

Review: ‘Next to Normal’ at Resident Theatre Company

Next to Normal isn’t your standard Broadway musical. But this offbeat Pulitzer Prize-winner, now receiving a solid production at West Chester’s Resident Theatre Company, shines a light on a condition that, unexpectedly, turns out to be a perfect fit for a musical drama. Its central character, Diana, suffers from bipolar disorder – she’s a model […]

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Mina Kawahara. Photo by Paola Nogueras.

Review: ‘Godspell’ at Villanova Theatre

Godspell has always been a show filled with spirit. Ever since its New York debut in 1971, it’s been a vehicle for a lot more than a religious message. Its loose structure – John-Michael Tebelak’s book recounts of Jesus’ life and teachings through a modern lens – allows for lots of improvisation and invention. Villanova […]

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Virginia Barrie and Susan Dewey. Photo courtesy South Camden Theatre Company.

Review: ‘Ripcord’ at South Camden Theatre Company

Ripcord is the story of a cutthroat battle of practical jokes and dirty tricks between two women in an assisted-living residence for the elderly. Does that seem unlikely? Then you’ve never met Abby and Marilyn, who aren’t your typical little old ladies. In David Lindsay-Abaire’s comedy, Abby has made an art of being difficult. She’s angered […]

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Mierka Girten, Michael Shannon, and John Judd. Photo by Richard Termine.

Review: ‘Simpatico’ at McCarter Theatre Center

“Do you want to talk, or do you want to be cryptic and weird?” Those words – which sound like they might belong in a lot of Sam Shepard’s plays – appear in the first scene of Shepard’s Simpatico. And they set the tone for this sometimes cryptic, sometimes weird, but always riveting production at […]

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2017 FringeArts Festival Philadelphia

2017 Philadelphia Fringe Festival Review: ‘Airswimming’ by Half Key Theatre Company at Walnut Street Theatre Studio 5

Airswimming, Charlotte Jones’ play about two Englishwomen stuck in a mental institution for no good reason, walks – or should that be swims? – a fine line between sly humor and sensitivity. It’s received a lovely production at the Fringe. Dora and Persephone are two young women who have been consigned to Saint Dymphna Hospital […]

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2017 FringeArts Festival Philadelphia

2017 Philadelphia Fringe Festival Review: ‘Statements After an Arrest Under the Immorality Act’ by Blue Mercury Theatre at Independence Library

For the great South African playwright Athol Fugard, the personal is political. And nowhere is that more true than in Statements After an Arrest Under the Immorality Act, a 1972 Fugard play, based on a real-life 1966 case, about two lovers – a black man and a white woman – torn apart by the country’s […]

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Tony Braithwaite. Photo by Bill D'Agostino.

Review: ‘Which Reminds Me’ at Act II Playhouse

If you’re a fan of Tony Braithwaite and his one-person (or sometimes two-person) shows – often performed at Act II Playhouse, where he is the Artistic Director – you know what to expect from his latest show, Which Reminds Me. It’s another example of the amiable, easygoing humor that he’s made his trademark. And if […]

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Patricia Richardson. Photo by Joan Marcus.

Review: ‘Other Desert Cities’ at Bucks County Playhouse

In the opening moments of Other Desert Cities, playwright Jon Robin Baitz introduces us to a wealthy Southern California family whose members love to play tennis – but their favorite sport is getting under each other’s skin. This family is on edge, and while the play starts with rather standard conflicts – parents versus children, […]

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Here are the 2017 Barrymore Awards Nominations

The nominations for the Barrymore Awards for Excellence in Theatre for the 2016-17 season have been announced by Theatre Philadelphia. A total of 23 companies were recognized across 27 categories. 22 of the categories are determined by a group of 60 nominators and 12 judges, all theatre professionals. Five special awards (F. Otto Haas Award for an Emerging […]

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Christopher Damen and Abby Melick. Photo by Julia Peiperl. The Crucible

Review: ‘The Crucible’ at Princeton Summer Theater

When you enter the home of the Princeton Summer Theater to see The Crucible, you may wonder at first whether you’ve wandered into the right place. After all, Arthur Miller’s legendary play takes place during the Salem Witch Trials of the 1690s. But the stage is nearly bare: spotlights and their supporting trusses are virtually […]

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Charlotte Northeast. Photo courtesy Shakespeare in Clark Park.

Review: ‘Coriolanus’ at Shakespeare in Clark Park

Coriolanus has a reputation for being one of Shakespeare’s least accessible plays. Its title character, a Roman warrior turned reluctant politician, can be hard to get a bead on – and hard to root for. The play starts with ferocious battles, but soon devolves into arcane political discussions. And its characters’ allegiances shift so quickly […]

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