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Archive | Philadelphia Theater News

2017 FringeArts Festival Philadelphia

2017 Philadelphia Fringe Festival Review: ‘Iphigenia at Aulis’ by the Philadelphia Artists’ Collective at the USS Olympia

“What gods?” asks the devastated Clytemnestra after the sacrifice of her first-born daughter Iphigenia, in The Philadelphia Artists’ Collective’s Fringe adaptation of Iphigenia at Aulis. The ancient tale from the Trojan War, recounted by Euripedes circa 406 BC (and using the translation by Florence M. Stawell for the current production), raises universal, and often conflicting, […]

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2017 FringeArts Festival Philadelphia

2017 Philadelphia Fringe Festival Review: ‘Leaps of Faith and Other Mistakes’ by Almanac at the Painted Bride Art Center

Did you ever want to sail away from it all and begin anew with a circle of like-minded friends? That’s what the figures in Almanac’s Leaps of Faith and Other Mistakes do, in a decision that tests their individual commitment to the shared utopian goal and their trust in each other’s support – both emotionally […]

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2017 FringeArts Festival Philadelphia

2017 Philadelphia Fringe Festival Review: ‘Strange Tenants’ by Sam Tower + Ensemble at Power Plant Productions

Evincing the seminal inspiration of Fringe mainstays Pig Iron Theatre Company and New Paradise Laboratories, Strange Tenants is the latest original work developed in Sam Tower + Ensemble’s characteristic method and experimental style. A mash-up of ensemble-devised neo-expressionist movement, a script that parodies the mid-20th-century genre of film noir, and a critical feminist eye on […]

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2017 FringeArts Festival Philadelphia

2017 Philadelphia Fringe Festival Review: ‘Labor of Love’ by The WaitStaff at L’Étage Cabaret

Philadelphia sketch-comedy icon, and longest-running annual act in the history of the Fringe, The WaitStaff marks its seventeenth year of participation with an all-new Labor of Love. Directed by the delightfully outrageous Eric Singel and featuring thirteen original skits performed by the hysterically impudent Jim Boyle, Sara Carano, Joanne Cunningham, Gerre Garrett, and Chris McGovern, […]

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2017 FringeArts Festival Philadelphia

2017 Philadelphia Fringe Festival Review: ‘. . . strand . . .’ by JUNK at Grays Ferry Crescent Trail Park

A transportive adventure awaits Fringe-goers in JUNK’s . . . strand . . ., as Brian Sanders and his stunning troupe contemplate the enigma of the time-space continuum in a dreamlike meditation on the evolution of civilization, in which the here-and-now, history, and posterity merge into one. Staged throughout “Forgotten Bottom” (Grays Ferry Crescent Trail […]

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2017 FringeArts Festival Philadelphia

2017 Philadelphia Fringe Festival Review: ‘United’ by The Revivalists at the Betsy Ross House

Performed in the candlelit courtyard of the historic Betsy Ross House and opening in the 2017 Fringe on September 9 – the same date, in 1776, that the Second Continental Congress declared our Colonies the United States of America – The Revivalists’ United, conceived and directed by Ben Smallen, is a well-researched and deeply-felt union of […]

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2017 FringeArts Festival Philadelphia

2017 Philadelphia Fringe Festival Review: ‘Fishtown – A Hipster Noir’ by Tribe of Fools at the Louis Bluver Theatre at the Drake

A spot-on parody of the retro-style of film noir in a hilarious send-up of our ever-growing post-modern obsession with social media and technology, Fishtown – A Hipster Noir reaffirms Tribe of Fools’ standing as a perennial favorite in the Philadelphia Fringe. Written by Caitlin Weigel and directed by Peter Smith, the hysterically sharp-witted show will […]

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2017 FringeArts Festival Philadelphia

2017 Philadelphia Fringe Festival Review: ‘As the Matzo Ball Turns – The Musical’ by Heart of a Lion Productions at the Independence Seaport Museum

A ten-year account of the failed pursuit of his Hollywood dreams, Gene Duffy’s As the Matzo Ball Turns – The Musical is an ambitious stage adaptation of the eponymous 2012 autobiographical chronicle by small-town Pennsylvania native Jozef Rothstein (Duffy’s pen name) – an aspiring actor earning his living as a waiter in a Jewish deli […]

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2017 FringeArts Festival Philadelphia

2017 Philadelphia Fringe Festival Review: ‘Pericles’ by Die-Cast at The Rotunda

Brainchild of Director Brenna Geffers and Designer Thom Weaver, the newly-formed Die-Cast makes its public premiere in the 2017 Fringe Festival with an arresting re-envisioning of the rarely-produced Shakespearean epic Pericles. Commissioned by the international Tennessee Williams Festival in Provincetown for presentation later this month on Cape Cod, the Philadelphia-based company’s original version of the […]

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2017 FringeArts Festival Philadelphia

2017 Philadelphia Fringe Festival Review: ‘Game Show Show’ by Found Theater Company at the MAAS Building

Seen through the lens of the popular phenomenon of the TV game show, Found Theater Company’s latest ensemble-devised Fringe offering, Game Show Show, considers the ethical dilemma of how far a person would go to achieve success, while casting a critical eye on the declining societal standards promoted in our mass-media culture. Directed by Alison […]

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2017 FringeArts Festival Philadelphia

2017 Philadelphia Fringe Festival Review: ‘Eugène Ionesco’s The Bald Soprano’ by The Idiopathic Ridiculopathy Consortium at the Bethany Mission Gallery

The banality of bourgeois life, the futile desperation to find meaning in mundane existence, the trivial chatter and vapid clichés used to fill the emptiness of everyday being, and the failure of language to express anything but the illogic of it all are the tragicomic themes of Eugène Ionesco’s The Bald Soprano. Though the Absurdist […]

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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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Jeff Dietzler and Harry Dietzler, Photo by Mark Dietzler.

Father, Son, and The Hunchback of Notre Dame: Interviews with Producer/Director Harry Dietzler and Director Jeff Dietzler of Upper Darby Summer Stage

Harry Dietzler, the executive and artistic director of Upper Darby Summer Stage, one of America’s oldest and most successful theater programs for young adults, founded the Summer Stage in 1976 as a 20-year-old drama teacher. The program has trained dozens of locally and nationally known performers, including such luminaries as Tina Fey. Dietzler won the […]

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Review: ‘Wicked’ at the Academy of Music

From its origins in L. Frank Baum’s1900 novel The Wonderful Wizard of Oz to its adaptation in MGM’s blockbuster 1939 film The Wizard of Oz to its annual TV broadcast on CBS beginning in 1956 (which made it one of the best-known and most-viewed movies in history), the fantasy of Dorothy’s journey to the Land […]

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Review: ‘Moon over Buffalo’ at People’s Light

Now in production at People’s Light, Ken Ludwig’s Moon over Buffalo, directed by Pete Pryor, contains all the expected elements of a farce: there’s mistaken identity; insult humor; impassioned break-ups and make-ups; parodies of the classics; running jokes; physical comedy with over-the-top characters who scream, fight, ugly cry, and mug, get drunk, get angry, and […]

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Deb Miller’s Top Picks for the ‘2017 Philadelphia Fringe Festival’

From antiquity to the present, tragedy and drama to absurdism and comedy, masterpieces by classic playwrights to experimental ensemble-devised works by local artists, the 2017 Philadelphia Fringe Festival runs the gamut over the span of eighteen days, from September 7-24, with 158 offerings throughout the city (plus another twelve shows in the Curated Fringe, and […]

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Barefoot in the Park at Candlelight Theatre

Review: ‘Barefoot in the Park’ at The Candlelight Theatre

Six days do not a week make. These famous words of nonsense, uttered by the young wife Cory, will tell all serious theatergoers that they are in the domain of Neil Simon and his oft-performed blockbuster Barefoot in the Park.  Written in 1963, Barefoot established Simon as the go-to playwright for Broadway comedy.  Nowadays we […]

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An Interview with Josh Hitchens and Ryan Walter: Going Dark in the New Jersey Fringe with ‘The Confession of Jeffrey Dahmer’

Between 1978 and 1991, Jeffrey Dahmer committed the shocking murders of seventeen men, involving necrophilia, dismemberment, cannibalism, and the preservation of the victims’ body parts. After years of law enforcement and the public ignoring the many signs that could have led to his earlier capture, he was ultimately found “guilty but sane” in 1992, and […]

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