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  • Lipstick Lobotomy by Krista Knight

    At Chicago's Trap Door Theatre

    By: Nancy Bishop - Feb 18th, 2020

    Throughout the play, the patients engage in therapy scenes, identified by actors two-stepping in with signs announcing Opera Therapy, Steam Therapy, Abdominal Therapy, Dancing Therapy or Makeup Therapy (patients apply cosmetics to each other). The worst is the ghastly Smile Therapy, in which patients parade around wearing strap masks with garish painted-on smiles.

  • Medea by Simon Stone at BAM

    Rose Byrne and Bobby Cannavale Deliver Riveting Performances

    By: Susan Hall - Feb 17th, 2020

    BAM is mounting an elegant, moving, hip update of the Medea story, written after Euripides by Simon Stone. Starring Rose Byrne and Bobby Cannavale, the set is a made up of a rectangular screen onto which video images are projected. Often we see the actors in extreme close up. Their miced voices bring them even closer. The backdrop of the stage and two wings which bend in at about 40 degree angles are white. So too the stage floor. It calls attention to the stage action and to the emotional temper of Anna and Lucas, Claire, the new girlfriend, Elspeth the therapist, and Anna's and Lucas’ two children, Edgar, and Gus.

  • One Evening:Two Works at Komische Oper, Berlin

    J. Weinberger and G. Verdi

    By: Angelika Jansen - Feb 15th, 2020

    It is always a time for heightened expectations when one goes to any performance at the Komische Oper, Berlin. It will not necessarily be enjoyable for everybody but it will definitely always be provocative. The Komische Oper presents as one performance: Fruehlingsstuerme and La Traviata.

  • Samuel Beckett in South Florida

    Happy Days at Ft. Lauderdale's Thinking Cap Theatre

    By: Aaron Krause - Feb 17th, 2020

    Superb acting, technical work combine to create a compelling production of Samuel Beckett's Happy Days at Thinking Cap Theatre. Veteran south Florida performer Karen Stephens shines in the role of Winnie.

  • National Sawdust Presents Against the Grain Opera

    Intriguing Peek Into Artists-in-Residence Program

    By: Susan Hall - Feb 16th, 2020

    National Sawdust, an artist led Brooklyn group, is a leading incubator of new music. One aspect of their work is an artists-in-residence program. Committed to assisting the creation of music that has impact, artists are encouraged to draw from personal experience and their interpretation of the world. Mrs. Winslow's Soothing Syrup explores the opioid crisis.

  • Shakespeare & Company 2020 Season

    A Mix of Classic and Contemporary in Lenox

    By: S&Co - Feb 11th, 2020

    The 2020 season of Shakespere and Company starts on May 21 with Lifespan of a Fact by Jeremy Kareken, David Murrell, and Gordon Farrell. The small stage production features Annette Miller. King Lear opens at the Tina Packer Playhouse on June 28. Berkies Award winner, director Regge Life returns to anchor the season with Harold Pinter's Betrayal on September 18.

  • Actress Lynn Cohen at 86

    Remembered for Magda in Sex in the City

    By: Edward Rubin - Feb 16th, 2020

    New York critic Edward Rubin remembers Lynn Cohen an actress fondly remembered as the Ukranian maid Magda in the TV series Sex in the City. Ed has often been close with the performers he writes about.

  • Boston Artist John Powell at 73

    Memorial Exhibition at Howard Yezerski Gallery

    By: Charles Giuliano - Feb 13th, 2020

    John Powell finished but did not see his final exhibition. He died at 73 just days before the opening of Neon Shadows at Howard Yezerski. Artists and former fellows of the Center for Advanced Visual Studies at MIT will gather to pay their respects. He will be celebrated for a career in art, science and technology. That was manifested in large public art projects. Using dramatic lighting he transformed quotidian into sublime. A bridge we traverse every day and hardly notice was transformed into an enormous sculpture with light shaping its form.

  • Adoption Roulette by Elizabeth Fuller and Joel Vig

    Palm Springs Woman’s Club

    By: Jack Lyons - Feb 16th, 2020

    “Adoption Roulette” is an Actors play. The action takes place on a bare-bones stage with no props or set furniture. The physical movements in the play are mimed, and the actors play multiple roles.

  • Ballroom at CVREP

    Lively Revival of 1970s Musical

    By: Jack Lyons - Feb 12th, 2020

    Ballroom features the music of Billy Goldenberg, with a libretto by Jerome Kass, and the lyrics by multiple Oscar, Emmy, and Grammy award-winning songwriters Alan and Marilyn Bergman, under the direction of Ron Celona. It’s the boldest and most audacious production in CVREP history.

  • Williamstown Theatre Festival 2020

    Audra McDonald in Streetcar Named Desire

    By: WTF - Feb 11th, 2020

    The Williamstown Theatre Festival launches with Streetcar Named Desire starring Audra McDonald on June 30. The season will feature five world premieres.

  • Sea Slopes

    Sonoma Coast Chardonnay

    By: Philip S, Kampe - Feb 13th, 2020

    Some California Chardonnays are often too buttery and oaky for the palate. A little oak is good and not overpowering, as is the case with this brilliant bottle of Sonoma Coast Chardonnay.

  • Pipeline at Studio Theatre in Washington, D.C.

    A Searing Take on Black Male Anger and Rage

    By: Susan Hall - Feb 07th, 2020

    Pipeline by Dominique Morisseau opened at Lincoln Center Theater in July of 2017. Since it premiered, the play, a multi-faceted look at the 'pipeline' young black men travel from high school to prison, has had more performances across the US than any other play. It is easy to understand why. This powerful presentation of the role of parents, teachers, security guards and administration in this all too familiar path, the play provides rich opportunities for actors.

  • Manahatta by Mary Kathryn Nagle

    At Yale Rep

    By: Karen Isaacs - Feb 11th, 2020

    Manahatta, now at the Yale Rep through Saturday, Feb. 15, offers a great deal to think about. It is getting its east coast premiere, having had its initial production at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival in 2018. Playwright Mary Kathryn Nagle, an enrolled citizen of the Cherokee Nation, is a lawyer, writer and activist.

  • Labyrinth by Broken Nose Theatre

    By U.K. playwright Beth Steel

    By: Nancy Bishop - Feb 07th, 2020

    I highly recommend this fast-moving, smart and funny play by U.K. playwright Beth Steel. If you’re not familiar with the early 1980s global economic recession and the Latin American debt crisis, you might want to read up on it before seeing the play.

  • Robert Johnson King of the Delta Blues Players

    A New Biography by Bruce Conforth & Gayle Dean Wardlow

    By: Charles Giuliano - Feb 02nd, 2020

    The King of the Delta Blues, Robert Johnson, died in relative obscurity on August 16, 1938. Fifty years later he was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame when it was founded in 1986. In 1961 Columbia released King of the Delta Blues Players with Volume Two in 1970. The Complete Recordings a two-disc set, released on August 28, 1990, contains almost everything Johnson recorded, with all 29 recordings, and 12 alternate takes.

  • Groundhog Day: The Musical

    A Co-Production in South Florida

    By: Aaron Krause - Feb 05th, 2020

    Groundhog Day is a meaty, moving and humorous story on stage. A shining Slow Burn Theatre Company/Broward Center for the Performing Arts co-production runs through Feb. 16. An ingenious, symbolic set design are among the strong production values. A talented cast shines in this convincing, vivacious production. The stage musical is based on the 1993 film starring Bill Murray as Phil Connors.

  • Queen for Nine Days Reigns at Jordan Hall

    Gil Rose Brings Us Arnold Rosner's Lady Jane Grey

    By: Susan Hall - Feb 03rd, 2020

    Jordan Hall in Boston was the setting for a concert version of Arnold Rosner’s The Chronicle of Nine. His only opera for full orchestra is having its world premiere. Gil Rose, recent Grammy winner for best recorded opera, finds treasures in the archives and brings them to our attention. We are fortunate indeed.

  • Tiny Beautiful Things

    At San Francisco Playhouse

    By: Victor Cordell - Feb 04th, 2020

    The structure of Tiny Beautiful Things is comprised of unrelated letters requesting counsel, followed by Sugar’s responses, so the incoming letters lack a narrative arc. However, the themes of human dignity, self-worth, redemption, forgiveness, and especially love, course throughout, resulting in emotional connectedness.

  • El Regajal Winery Is Madrid’s Finest

    Home To 77 Butterfly Species

    By: Philip S. Kampe - Feb 07th, 2020

    When you think of Spain and its wineries, you think about butterflies. Well think again, as you read about El Regajal Winery and winemaker Danny Garcia-Pita. It is a remarkable combination.

  • Roland Colton Brings Us a Piano Music eBook

    Mentioned Music Available at a Click as You Read

    By: Susan Hall - Feb 04th, 2020

    Forever Gentleman, by Roland Colton, has several novel twists. It tells the tale of Nathan Sinclair, an architect and sometimes concert pianist of first-rate talents in both disciplines. When we meet him, he has been introduced into a good woman who deeply attracts him. He vows to settle a debt to a loan broker. He has incurred the debt because a client has been unable to pay up. One thread in the story is a Dickensian tour of Victorian debtor courts and jails in 1869. Colton is able to lead us through this tortuous path with vigorous, clear writing.

  • The Devil’s Music: The Life and Blues of Bessie Smith

    By Angelo Parra at Center Repertory Company

    By: Victor Cordell - Feb 02nd, 2020

    Despite 7,000 attending her funeral, Bessie Smith lay in an unmarked grave for many years, as her ultimately estranged husband pocketed funds donated for her headstone. That was remedied in 1970 with a gift from one Janis Joplin.

  • My Name Is Lucy Barton by Elizabeth Stout

    Samuel J. Friedman Theatre on Broadway.

    By: Edward Rubin - Jan 31st, 2020

    My Name Is Lucy Barton written by Elizabeth Stout and published to a chorus of Hosannas in 2016, is now a one-woman, 2-character play, running through February 29 at Manhattan Theatre Club’s Samuel J. Friedman Theatre on Broadway. Adapted from the book by Rona Munro and directed by Richard Eyre, Lucy Barton stars Laura Linney.

  • Evita in South Florida

    At The Wick Theatre In Boca Raton

    By: Aaron Krause - Feb 01st, 2020

    The Wick Theatre presents a powerhouse production of Evita. Triple-threat performers and Behind-the Scenes crew shine. The production runs through Feb. 23 in Boca Raton.

  • Verböten by House Theatre

    At Chicago's Chopin Theatre

    By: Nancy Bishop - Jan 31st, 2020

    The old rock trope says that punk music is “three chords and the truth.” That holds true for the fact-based story about a kid punk band from Evanston in the 1980s, which just opened in a world premiere by House Theatre. Verböten is the name of the play and the band.

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