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Tag Archives | Debra Booth

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Review #2: ‘The Father’ at The Studio Theatre

It’s taken five years for The Father—the highly-acclaimed drama by Florian Zeller that shook Paris in 2012—to arrive in the Washington area. But now that it’s here—following sold-out performances in London and New York—this stunning puzzle of a play has settled in for a month-long DC debut at Studio Theatre, where audiences lucky enough to […]

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Review: ‘The Father’ at The Studio Theatre

Some plays are more difficult to watch than others; some plays activate your imagination and pull you into their stories whole-body: those plays pull you into the psychological realities they portray. The Father by French Playwright Florian Zeller (translated by Christopher Hampton) is just such a play, and when a stellar ensemble is led by […]

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Spine: ‘A Human Being Died That Night’ at Mosaic Theater Company

About midway through Mosaic Theater’s A Human Being Died That Night, Eugene de Kock, serving two life sentences for murder and assassination, turns to his interviewer, Pumla Gobodo-Madikizela, and says, in effect, that the privileged people of South Africa knew all along what he and the South African Special Forces were doing: the kidnapping, the torturing, the […]

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Review: ‘Blood Knot’ at Mosaic Theater Company of DC

 South African playwright Athol Fugard’s early masterpiece, Blood Knot, has finally returned to DC. And, judging by the roaring ovation on opening night, those who can see this production during its brief run at Mosaic Theater Company of DC are in for an electrifying experience. The play, which marks the opening shot in Mosaic’s first […]

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Spine: Consciousness, Conscience, and ‘The Hard Problem’ at The Studio Theatre

Tom Stoppard’s The Hard Problem isn’t so much about consciousness and the existence of subjectivity, “the hard problem” elucidated by contemporary Australian philosopher David Chalmers, as it is about conscience and the human capacity to construct an ethical framework, a truly “impossible problem” (my own quotation marks). The fact that Tom Stoppard can take such […]

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Magic Time! ‘The Hard Problem’ at The Studio Theatre

I love when a play starts out as a fascinating head trip—a smart, high-concept exhilaration of ideas—then propels me headlong into an overwhelming flood of emotion. It’s like being transported along a neural pathway from brain to heart that the playwright has turned into a thoroughfare of theatrical euphoria. Tom Stoppard scripts that extraordinary excursion […]

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In the Moment: The Studio Theatre’s ‘The Hard Problem’

Studio Theatre’s production of The Hard Problem by Tom Stoppard charmed me with its intellectual and ideological turmoil fueled by verbal fierceness. With a shiny, contemporary veneer and Stoppard’s cleverly stylish verbal razzle dazzle about science and finance, I left the performance thinking I had been eaves-dropping on a cool late night argument on “big” issues […]

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Review: ‘The Hard Problem’ at The Studio Theatre

No shrinking violet when it comes to exploring humanity’s most complex questions, playwright Tom Stoppard takes a deep dive into the frontiers of neuroscience, human nature, and the existence of God in his newest play, The Hard Problem. Fortunately for all of us, Studio Theatre’s production of this fascinating drama sparkles with fresh insights into […]

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Review: ‘Constellations’ at The Studio Theatre

Nick Payne’s Constellations embraces String Theory and its multiverses as it takes its intimate, in-the-round, Stage 4 audience on an emotional rollercoaster ride through the courtship, breakup, marriage, and death of Marianne (Lily Balatincz) and Roland (Tom Patterson). And it makes no difference that String Theory has suffered some serious, discrediting blows in the last […]

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Magic Time! ‘Constellations’ at The Studio Theatre

We enter a mini coliseum and take our seats on cushions of many colors on one of several rows of blue benches encircling the blank stage. The dim lighting feels hallowed; the music, reverential. There are no back rests—perhaps we are not expected to get too comfortable? Guess not. For though we do not know […]

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‘Belleville’ at The Studio Theatre

Life is Beautiful is more than an Academy Award-winning film title; that savored notion is a mantra generations of Americans are nurtured to hope, dream, and believe. The adventure and escape to the beautiful life – living in Belleville (“beautiful town”), an artsy and ethnically diverse neighborhood in Paris, France – is the idyllic vision […]

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‘The Prostate Dialogues’ at Theater J

Theater J’s finale to its fine 2013–2014 season turns out to be a surprisingly poignant solo performance about a man’s privates. Storyteller Jon Spelman is our genial guide; the genitals in question are his; and the show is suitable for a general adult audience—even the bits that border on too much information. Judging from the laughter […]

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Magic Time! ‘Cock’ at The Studio Theatre

If this were a theater review it would be an effusive rave. The production of Mike Bartlett’s play Cock now at The Studio Theatre is impeccable: The lighting, the sound, the direction, the casting, the acting, all are flawless. Whatever praise you’ve read about the show is likely all true. If you’ve been tempted but […]

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‘Cock’ at The Studio Theatre

Buckle your seat belts. Love is often random, rarely planned, and always unpredictable. When you fall in love rational thinking is no longer common place. We can’t help who we love. But, in a fresh twist on the modern day love triangle, Cock, the closing production of the 2013-2014 Subscription Series at The Studio Theatre, […]

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‘The Apple Family Plays: That Hopey Changey Thing’ at The Studio Theatre by Sydney-Chanele Dawkins

Heartily consumed, easily digested and readily recommended, The Apple Family Plays at Studio Theatre present an engrossing slice of family life populated by challenging, complex, ordinary people full of American pie appeal. These are folks that you know. Playing in rotating repertory in the intimate 187-seat, Milton Theatre, That Hopey Changey Thing and Sweet and […]

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