Archive | Pennsylvania

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Review: ‘Really’ at Theatre Exile

If you’re in the mood for a straightforward narrative with a clear-cut beginning, middle, and ending, then Theatre Exile’s Philadelphia premiere of Really, by Brooklyn-based playwright Jackie Sibblies Drury, probably isn’t the show for you. But if you want to be challenged, haunted, and provoked into considering the big issues of life, death, and remembrance […]

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Eleanor Handley. Photo by Mark Garvin.

Review: ‘Time Stands Still’ at Bristol Riverside Theatre

Time Stands Still, Donald Margulies’ fascinating drama at Bristol Riverside Theatre, seems at first as if it’s going to be a deep meditation on war and politics. But Margulies’ characters, as it turns out, aren’t greatly concerned with those big issues. What matters most to them are personal issues – and what matters to the […]

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Jennie Eisenhower. Photo by Mark Garvin.

Review: ‘The Humans’ at the Walnut Street Theatre

The Blakes are not your ordinary dysfunctional family. As they gather for Thanksgiving dinner in an unfamiliar locale, everything seem fine, if a little off-kilter; they engage in their favorite holiday traditions, including singing an Irish drinking song together. They’re not above needling each other, but they are, above all, supportive of each other. Yet […]

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An Interview with John Guare: Previewing the ‘Lydie Breeze Trilogy’ at Philadelphia’s EgoPo Classic Theater

With an illustrious career spanning the past five decades, John Guare has been the recipient of Tony, Obie, and Olivier Awards, a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize for Drama, and an Oscar nominee, among his many other honors. Highlights of his renowned work include The House of Blue Leaves, Six Degrees of Separation, Landscape of […]

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Jamar Williams and Savannah L. Jackson. Photo by Bill Hebert.

Review: ‘Passing Strange’ at The Wilma Theater

“Life is a mistake that only art can correct.” That’s not a line you’d expect to hear at a rock and roll show, is it? But Passing Strange isn’t your typical rock show, or musical, or biography. It examines the intersection of life and art, inspiration and creation, not to mention race and class. And while […]

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Review: ‘Copenhagen’ at Lantern Theater Company

With most of the performances sold out before the show even opened, Lantern Theater Company has already announced a one-week extension of its current production of Copenhagen, and that’s good news for aficionados of serious theater in Philadelphia. Directed by Kittson O’Neill, the revival of its 2003-04 season hit features the return of the Lantern’s […]

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Morning's at Seven, People's Light

Review: ‘Morning’s at Seven’ at People’s Light

Morning’s at Seven fits the definition of “quaint.” With its elderly characters and its winsome setting – a Midwestern town in the 1930s, where everybody knows each other’s problems a little too well – Paul Osborn’s genial 1939 comedy is practically a Norman Rockwell painting come to life. But look closer at those houses onstage […]

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An Interview with ‘The Summer Club’ – Previewing ‘A Big Band Valentine’s Day’ at Philadelphia Theatre Company

Since its premiere in the Jersey-shore town of Cape May in July 2014, The Summer Club has been bringing the retro sound of the Big Bands, the sophisticated stylings of the Swing era, and the tight-knit camaraderie for which the Rat Pack was known to audiences throughout the greater Philadelphia area. On Wednesday, February 14, […]

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Brian Weiser and Teresa Nutter. Photo by Mariangela Saavedra.

Review: ‘Jacob Marley’s Christmas Carol’ at Casabuena Cultural Productions

Jacob Marley’s Christmas Carol proves that damnation can be funnier than hell. Casabuena Cultural Productions’ irreverent take on the beloved Charles Dickens classic follows Marley on a redemptive quest to save his wretched soul. Directed by Mariangela Saavedra, Jacob Marley’s Christmas Carol feels akin to the 1988 Bill Murray film Scrooged (a classic in its […]

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Michael Fegley and Winslow Fegley. Photo by Johanna Austin.

Review: ‘A Billion Nights on Earth’ at FringeArts

Thaddeus Phillips’ and Steven Dufala’s spectacularly enjoyable, glowing world of far out, fantastical adventure unfolds and forms like theatrical origami within the FringeArts black box theater. Stemming from a simple story line where a boy named Winslow (Winslow Fegley) cannot get to sleep, scenes progress surreally as from a child’s imagination, or a dream state, […]

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Karen Peakes. Photo by Mark Garvin.

Review: ‘Bad Dates’ at Act II Playhouse

Bad Dates, by Theresa Rebeck, is the third one-person play I’ve seen in the past two months. The others were 2.5 Minute Ride, an autobiographical drama by Lisa Kron which was produced at Theatre Horizon, and Buyer & Cellar, a satirical comedy by Jonathan Tollins staged by 1812 Productions. Compared to them, Bad Dates is […]

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Don Stephenson. Photo by Joan Marcus.

Review: ‘Ebenezer Scrooge’s BIG Playhouse Christmas Show’ at Bucks County Playhouse

How many versions of A Christmas Carol have you seen? Probably too many to count. But I can guarantee you’ve never seen one that mentions Doylestown, Lambertville and Peddler’s Village before. They all get shout-outs in Ebenezer Scrooge’s BIG Playhouse Christmas Show, this year’s Yuletide offering at Bucks County Playhouse. Yes, it’s an adaptation of […]

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Review: ‘Urban Scuba: Adult Swim’ at Brian Sanders’ JUNK

Part of the popular Urban Scuba Series, this year’s holiday offering by Brian Sanders’ JUNK is one that’s sure to land you on Santa’s naughty list! Urban Scuba: Adult Swim presents a sequence of saucy fantasies of what some libidinous grown-ups might really want for Christmas, as Artistic Director and Choreographer Sanders takes his troupe […]

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Jason Vieaux. Photo by GMD Three.

Review: LiveConnections Presents Fifth House Ensemble + Jason Vieaux at World Cafe Live

LiveConnections Presents kicked off its new season in rousing fashion with an evening of music from the Chicago-based Fifth House Ensemble and classical guitarist Jason Vieaux – introduced, in keeping with the educational mission of LiveConnections Presents, by an ensemble of high school students from Play On, Philly! performing Steve Reich’s “Music for Pieces of […]

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Adrianna Hicks and Company. Photo by Matthew Murphy.

Review: ‘The Color Purple’ at the Forrest Theatre

It may take place in rural Georgia circa 1909, but because of today’s headlines about the mistreatment of women, The Color Purple is more relevant than ever. The tour of the recent Broadway hit (winner of the Tony Award for Best Revival) has arrived at the Forrest Theatre for a short run that ends this […]

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Get into the Holiday Spirits with Tinsel Christmas Pop-Up Bar!

Philadelphia’s Midtown Village is a whole lot brighter this year with the opening of Tinsel, a new Christmas pop-up bar in the space occupied for over 100 years by Simpson’s Jewelry. The sparkle of diamonds has been replaced by the twinkle of holiday lights of all types and colors, and the former jewelry counter has […]

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Hilary Hahn. Photo by Michael Patrick O'Leary.

Review: Hilary Hahn Plays Bernstein with The Philadelphia Orchestra

The Leonard Bernstein Centenary continues with concerts by Yannick Nézet-Séguin and The Philadelphia Orchestra. Last weekend’s performances featured one of Bernstein’s most interesting (and relatively obscure) compositions — his Serenade (after Plato’s Symposium), for solo violin, strings, harp and percussion. That Plato Symposium, allow me to remind you, was a series of dissertations in ancient […]

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Review: ‘Aladdin: A Musical Panto’ at People’s Light

Continuing its signature holiday tradition this year with the company’s 14th annual panto – a family-friendly seasonal brand of musical-comedy entertainment, with origins dating back to the 18th-century British Music Hall – People’s Light presents a new version of its 2012 hit Aladdin: A Musical Panto. Co-written by the returning team of Director Pete Pryor […]

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Review: ‘The Art of Swimming’ at Tiny Dynamite

Opening Tiny Dynamite’s seventh season of “A Play, A Pie, and A Pint” – its popular happy-hour series of one-act plays, which includes a slice of pizza and a beer or soft drink with every ticket – is the American premiere of Lynda Radley’s The Art of Swimming, a one-woman play about the author’s rediscovery […]

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