Sunday, May 31, 2015

L'Amfiparnaso


THE WEST END THEATER  presents

L'AMFIPARNASO

A madrigal comedy from 1594 by Orazio Vecchi

THE WESTERN WIND
Sopranos:  MICHELE KENNEDY, LINDA LEE JONES
Countertenor:  WILLIAM ZUKOF
Tenors:  TODD FRIZZELL, DAVID VANDERWAL
Baritone: ELLIOT Z. LEVINE

with
Mimes:  CATHERINE GASTA & ALEXANDER REED

Stage Direction by GAMA VALLE
Set Design by BRADLEY WEHRLE
Lighting Design by  JASON FOK
Costumes by LUIS E. SANTIAGO


The West End Theater
The Church of Saint Paul and Saint Andrew, 86th Street between Broadway and West End Ave.

Call 212-873-2848 or visit http://www.westernwind.org
May 28 - 31, 2015

The Western Wind ensemble of singers sang Vecchi's madrigal comedy in delightful and witty notes characteristic of the 16th century commedia dell'arte form. For those who don't understand Italian, there were subtitles so one could follow the story. The traditional comic characters including Pantalone, Pedrolino, Dr. Gratiano, Capitano and the lovers, Isabella, Lucio, Lelio and Nisa were all interpreted by two very skillful mimes (Catherine Gasta and Alexander Reed).

It's a madcap revue about love, hurt, lust, greed, and playful seduction. The madrigal comedy genre was brilliantly sung by The Western Wind as the singers had to shift quickly from character to character in a tricky polyphonic alternation.

It's a short run and I'd recommend to see L'Amfiparnaso at The West End Theater. It's not often, you see a 16th century madrigal comedy in the 21st century! 

If you miss it, then you can buy The Western Wind CDs on their website. They're an acclaimed vocal sextet devoted to a cappella music and their repertoire goes from the Renaissance to medieval carols to jazz standards to avant-garde works. They've performed all over the world at distinguished venues, such as, Lincoln Center, Carnegie Hall and Kennedy Center and have won many awards, including the ASCAP-Chamber Music America Award.

- Laura Thompson -


 

 

 

 

Der Kanarienvogel (The Canary)


THE CLARION THEATRE presents
 
DER KANARIENVOGEL (THE CANARY)
 
A new play by STEVEN CARL McCASLAND
Directed by STEVEN CARL McCASLAND
Cast
Elizabeth Schwarzkopf...Anna Kirkland
Mike Hamilton...Brian Piehl
Joseph Goebbels...Levi Morger
Maria Ivogun...Ellyn Stein
Karl Bohm...Mathew Martin
 Adolf Hitler...David Gautschy
Kirsten Flagstad...Kim Rogers
Richard Strauss...Rick Grossman*
Herman  Wilhelm Goring...Orlando Iriarte
Eva Braun/Assistant...Rachel Adams
*Appearing courtesy of the Actors' Equity Association
 
Creative Team
Director:  Steven Carl McCasland
Stage Manager:  Hailli Ridscale
Assistant Director:  Kristen Gehling*
Lighting Designer:  Jessical Creager
Costume Designer:  Somie Pak
 
The Clarion Theatre
309 East 26th Street
New York City
 
Tickets can be purchased at http://BeautifulSoup.Showclix.com.
View the trailer at www.tinyurl.com/InRepertory.
May 7th - May 31st, 2015
 
 
DER KANARIENVOGEL (THE CANARY) is a play featuring Arias by Guiseppe Verdi and Richard Strauss that explores the life and career of soprano Elisabeth Schwarzkopf  (played by actual soprano Anna Kirkland) and how it collides with the inner circle of The Third Reich. Mike Hamilton (Brian Piehl) in academia interviews Schwarzkopf in her later years for his dissertation to prove how politics and music are inseparable. Schwarzkopf, considered a Nazi sympathizer, will do anything to have a shining opera career until her conscious awareness makes her realize she's associating with monsters only to feel like a victim herself. Kirsten Flagstad (Kim Rogers) another opera singer acts as her alter ego exposing her to the horrific events happening to the Jews. Richard Strauss (Rick Grossman)
unveils The Third Reich injustices and her guilty memories of not helping such a great composer yet she sings his arias to Adolf Hitler (David Gautschy) and her lover (Hermann Wilhelm Goring (Orlando Iriarte).
 
The playwright does not claim that this story is fiction and it is not intended to reflect actual circumstances and events.
 
If you'd like to see something from The Third Reich point of vue which really stretches your comfort zone, then go to Der Kanarienvogel (The Canary) at The Clarion Theatre.
- Laura Thompson -
 

Monday, May 11, 2015

Summer and Smoke

Miss Alma and Dr. John, Jr

T. SCHREIBER STUDIO FOR THEATRE & FILM presents

SUMMER AND SMOKE

By TENNESSE WILLIAMS
 
Directed by TERRY SCHREIBER
 
Cast
in order of appearance
John Buchanan...Jacques Mitchell
Rev. Winemiller... Daniel Hawk Hicks*
Mrs. Winemiller...Cynthia Shaw
Alma Winemiller...Taylor Graves
Nellie Eweii...Bevin  Bru
Rosa Gonzales...Aida
Alvarez Roger...lvan  Sandomire
Dr. John Buchanan, Sr...Jim Cyborowski*
Mrs. Bassett...Kathryn  Fray
Rosemary...Kathleen Kuhn
Gonzales...Stephan Antonio Ortiz*
Vernon/Dusty...Philip Rosen
Archie...Evan Silverman*
 
*Appearing courtesy of the Actors' Equity Association
 
Production Team
Director:  Terry Schreiber
Producer/Production Stage Manager:  DaVonne Onassis Bacchus
Assistant Director:  Ana Galang
Set Designer:  Hal Tine
Costume Designer:   Hope Governali
Lighting Designer:  Dennis Parichy
Sound Designer:  Andy Evan Cohen
Props Master:  Salina Polanco
Master Electrician:  Kyrie McCormick
House Manager: Tiffany Jo McNerlin
Dialect Coach:  Page Clements
Publicity:  Bunch of People Press & Publicity (Judd Hollander & Cynthia Leathers)
Graphic Art and Design:  Karen Moreno 

T. Schreiber Studio for Theatre & Film
151 West 26th Street, 7th Floor
New York, New York 10001 

Visit:  http://tschreiber.org  Tel:  212-741-0209
May 6th - June 6th, 2015 

SUMMER AND SMOKE is about "spirit and sensuality" set in Glorious Hill, Mississippi in 1913.  A Minister's daughter, Alma Winemiller (Taylor Graves) is secretly in love with her next door neighbor's son, John Buchanan (Jacques Mitchell), a recent graduate from John Hopkins Medical School to follow in his father's footsteps as a doctor but loosely based morals, drinking, and gambling almost cost him his respectable lineage. Alma represents Puritanism and spirituality while John mendacity and the flesh, in essence, star-crossed lovers at opposite sides of the spectrum of mores.  How will this life-long loving friendship from childhood resolve itself? The cast performed well and Mrs. Winemiller (Cynthia Shaw) although a nut was quite aware underneath her facade--she added an element of fun and delight to this bittersweet story.

Any story written by Tennessee Williams is remarkable and I'd highly recommend to see Summer and Smoke at T. Schreiber Studio for Theatre & Film.

- Laura Thompson -

 


Lunt and Fontanne


TBE THEATRICAL in association with STAGE LEFT STUDIO  presents

LUNT AND FONTANNE:

"THE CELESTIALS OF BROADWAY"

 
By MARK E. LANG
Directed by OWEN THOMPSON
CAST:

Lynn Fontanne, et al............ALISON J. MURPHY
Alfred Lunt, et al.......................MARK EDWARD LANG

 Radio Announcer......MILLER LIDE
 

Creative Team:
Costume Design:  JESSA-RAYE COURT
Original Music:  ANTHONY UVA
Sound Design:  RICHARD FROHLICH
Lighting Consultant:  COURTNEY MEGARO
Graphic Design:  TBE DESIGN
Casting:  DEBORAH BROWN
Stage Manager:  KELSEY LANE DIES

Stage Left Studio
214 West 30th Street, NYC

Last Performance May 3rd.
 

LUNT AND FONTANNE: "THE CELESTIALS OF BROADWAY"  were the most famous couple on Broadway in the first half of the twentieth century and were given the nickname the "celestials." A 21st century husband and wife team played the Lunts synonymous with a theatrical-marital partnership in which they joke that they've become the "Lunt and Fontanne of South Jersey". 

The story is a tribute to this forgotten Broadway couple, an ode to acting, partnership, and marriage, and their undeniable love for the stage over Hollywood. Lynn Fontanne (Alison J. Murphy) and husband Alfred Lunt (Mark Edward Lang) embark on their journey from the 1920s through to the 1950s showcasing the highlights of their lives and matchless careers.

 The play had a short run but the story about "The Celestials of Broadway" was interesting.

- Laura Thompson -

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

The Belle of Belfast


THE IRISH REPERTORY THEATRE  presents the

THE BELLE OF BELFAST

By NATE RUFUS EDELMAN

Directed by CLAUDIA WEILL

Starring:  HAMISH ALLAN-HEADLEY, PATRICIA CONOLLY, ARIELLE HOFFMAN, KATE LYDIC, BILLY MELEADY

 

Creative Team:

Scenic Design:  JOHN MCDERMOTT

Costume Design:  TERESE WADDEN

Lighting Design:  JUSTIN TOWNSEND

Sound Design:  DANIEL KLUGER

Projections:  JEFF LARSON 

Dialect Coach:  STEPHEN GABIS

Fight Director:  RICK SORDELET

Casting:  DEBORAH BROWN

Production Stage Manager:  CHRISTINE LEMME

Assistant Stage Manager:  REBECCA C. MONROE

Press Representative:  COYLE ENTERTAINMENT

 

The Irish Reportory Theatre Company
The Season in Union Square at the DR2 Theatre

103 East 15th Street

 

Visit http://www.irishrep.org
Opening Night: Thursday, April 23, 2015

Scheduled to run through June 7th.

 

THE BELLE OF BELFAST is a contemporary work focused on the Northern Irish experience in Belfast during 1985 when the centuries-old conflict was high between the Catholics and the Protestants and one of the most contentious and defining conflicts of the twentieth century. However, the story is told in a poignantly, funny way with wonderful Irish humor.

It opens in a confessional with an elderly woman, Emma (Patricia Conolly) asking her parish priest, Father Ben Reilly (Hamish Allan-Headley) to absolve her sins but drinking is not a sin and he sends her away with four Hail Marys. Next, a fiery and profane young woman, Anne (Kate Lydic) confesses her sins and then, meets up with her school mate, Ciara (Arielle Hoffman) and they discuss what normal seventeen year olds would do--love, secrets, boys, drugs, alcohol, and Ciara's weakness for curry chips. Emma turns out to be Anne's crazy great aunt who's often had a few too many drinks and they both end up quite often in the confessional with the handsome Father Reilly at different times unbeknowst to the other. The story unfolds with the unimaginable happening intertwined with the after effects of the Belfast bombings as the senior priest, Father Dermott Behan (Billy Melaeady), although an old, drunken priest turns out to be quite wise and gives sage advice to the much younger, Father Reilly. Twists and turns abound and it's really a delight to watch. Overall, it's a wry, witty, and bittersweet portrayal of a select group of people in a city at war.

 I'd highly recommend to see The Belle of Belfast produced by The Irish Repertory Theatre and presented at the DR2 Theatre in Union Square.

- Laura Thompson -

Friday, April 10, 2015

Unmentionables


NYLON FUSION THEATRE COMPANY  presents the WORLD PREMIERE of

UNMENTIONABLES

By JOSEPH SAMUEL WRIGHT

Directed by MONTSERRAT MENDEZ

Starring:  JEANINE BARTEL, JIMMY BETTS, DANIELLE BOIVIN,

HEATHER E. CUNNINGHAM, MEGHAN JONES, CHRISTINA TOTH, RICK ZAHN

 

Creative Team:

Scenic Designer:  KYU SHIN

Sound Designer:  ANDY EVAN COHEN

Costume Designer:  DEBBI HOBSON

Stage Manager:  LAURA MALSEED

Publicist:  BUNCH OF PEOPLE PROD.

Assistant Stage Manager:  KIM FLORES

Props Master:  GREG KANYICSKA

Fight Choreographer:  JIMMY BETTS

Dramaturgy:  JANET BENTLEY

Management Consultant:  FORM THEATRICALS

(ANTHONY FRANCAVILLA & ZACHARY LAKS)

 

Nylon Fusion Theatre Company
Theatre 54, located at 244West 54th Street

Visit http://www.nylonfusion.org
April 2 - 18

UNMENTIONABLES is a story depicting life in Hollywood in 1937 with undercurrents of another  possible war looming on the horizon in Europe. However, the essence of the story revolves around top talent agent and lawyer James Johnson (Rick Zahn) and his top film star Joan Madison (Jeanine Bartel) on how to land the biggest deal of his life securing starring roles for his long time yet aging client. But Joan has secret plans of her own and something secretive about James has been revealed that could ruin his career. His office assistants are caught up in messy office politics and scandals and Gertie Fowler (Meghan E. Jones) is blackmailed to find the culprit because she's savvy to the secrets that are more than skin deep. Many truths are revealed and it's a bittersweet ending.

If you're interested in scandalous stories with a bit of humor about Hollywood in the late 1930s, then I'd recommend to see Unmentionables at Nylon Fusion Theatre Company.

- Laura Thompson -