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Archive | Columns

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Previewing ‘The Craftsman’ at Lantern Theater Company: An Interview with Artistic Director Charles McMahon and Playwright Bruce Graham

Philadelphia theater-goers have something extra to be thankful for this Thanksgiving month. Bruce Graham’s latest play The Craftsman, commissioned and developed through Lantern Theater Company’s New Works Initiative (as mentioned in my last interview with Graham in May 2016), will begin previews on November 9. The subject is one that has fascinated the Lantern’s Co-Founding […]

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Who’s in Town?: Tony Award-Winner Cynthia Erivo to Perform at the Kennedy Center This Saturday, November 4th, 2017

In my mind, Cynthia Erivo’s name is synonymous with strength and confidence. But it’s not just me. “Diva,” “lion,” and “dragon slayer” are just a few of the ways people have described her since she burst onto the US theater scene in 2015 with The Color Purple. A brief recap for those who don’t follow these […]

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Kyle Selig. Photo courtesy of Mean Girls.

Interview: ‘Mean Girls’ Star Kyle Selig Discusses Playing Aaron Samuels in the Broadway-Bound National Theatre Premiere

Broadway veteran Kyle Selig is no stranger to the role of teen heartthrob. “I was Prom King in high school,” he sheepishly admits, “but it is very important to us in Mean Girls that my character be more than just a two-dimensional pretty boy.” “My high school was all backwards because it was a performing […]

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Review: ‘Lonely Planet’ at Keen Company

The setting of Lonely Planet is a “map store on the oldest street in an American city.” I assume the playwright, Stephen Dietz, wrote that into the program to let us know that what we are about to witness could have happened almost anywhere in America. There are several maps mounted on the walls of the […]

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Magic Time!: ‘Hello, My Name Is…’ at The Welders

Having heralded five* Welders productions, I approached Deb Sivigny’s Hello, My Name Is… with both eagerness and wariness. Knowing that Sivigny had chosen as her subject a fact of her own biography—international adoption—I went aware that sometimes the very personal works onstage and sometimes it doesn’t, and saying so when it doesn’t can be awkward […]

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Review: ‘Red Roses, Green Gold’ at Minetta Lane Theatre

Calling all Dead Heads! The classic songs of your favorite band have been reincarnated for the stage at Minetta Lane Theatre, in a new jukebox musical Red Roses, Green Gold, directed by Rachel Klein and presented by MWM Live. Inspired by the music and lyrics of Jerry Garcia and Robert Hunter (with additional material by […]

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Review: ‘Pippin’ at Ritz Theatre Company

One of the most imaginative musicals ever to hit the Broadway stage, the Tony Award-winning Pippin, with music and lyrics by Stephen Schwartz and book by Roger O. Hirson, is now dazzling audiences in a high-energy production at the Ritz Theatre Company. Directed and choreographed by Brian Rivell, with vocal and music direction by Marc […]

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Review: ‘Dracula’ at The Mechanical Theater

Adapted, designed, and directed by Loretta Vasile, The Mechanical Theater’s immersive site-specific production of Bram Stoker’s Dracula, performed at the solemn Neo-Classical Receiving Vault of Laurel Hill Cemetery, provides the quintessential blood-curdling theme and spine-chilling location for the Halloween season. Founded in 1836, the historic burial ground, filled with 19th-century tombs and funerary monuments, couldn’t […]

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Review: ‘Thing of Evil: Fantastic Tales of Terror’ at the Painted Bride Art Center

Long-time collaborators Phoebe Schaub and Emily R. Johnson, known to Philadelphia audiences for their haunting and transportive style as former members of Found Theater Company, have teamed up again as Co-Creators of Thing of Evil: Fantastic Tales of Terror – a spooky two-part series of Halloween-time treats performed every Tuesday in October at the Painted […]

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Review: ‘Hello, My Name Is…’ at The Welders

Challenging theatrical conventions, Hello, My Name Is… by Deb Sivigny, directed by Randy Baker, and produced by The Welders is like no other theater production I have taken in, in recent memory. The production delicately took my hand, then persuasively guided me undeniably into stories and design elements I had not witnessed before on a DC area […]

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In the Moment: Interview with Lighting Designer Andrew F. Griffin

Folger’s production of Antony and Cleopatra directed by Robert Richmond has garnered its rightful share of critical acclaim. Its lighting design is a critical component of the production’s striking visual presence. There was a cinematic feel to the production; scenes-within-scenes, scenes that had both color and film-noir-like black-and-white lighting aspects. I was smitten with the […]

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Dangereuse: ‘Emilie’ by Lauren Gunderson at WSC Avant Bard

Emilie Our Contemporary Emilie du Châtelet, scientist, mathematician, lover of Voltaire, genius, is a perfect example of the power of women in the 18th century and today. Many of the challenges to women of the past are still with us: gender, racial, sexual preference, religious and ethnic discrimination. There is violence against women, sexual assault, and […]

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