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PETE REX Opens @ 59E59 Theaters

Brad Raimondo, Simon Winheld, Greg Carere, Rosie Sowa, Alexander V. Thompson

A quirky tale about a smooth-talking Tyrannosaur is an homage to late night creature films.

February 15, 2018: The Dreamscape Theater is presenting the NYC premiere of PETE REX , a quirky tale by Alexander V. Thompson, about a smooth-talking Tyrannosaur named Nero. Directed by Brad Raimondo the play, billed as “part comedy, part absurdism, part horror,” focuses on Pete a small town, Midwestern guy, played by Greg Carere, and his obsessions with dinosaurs. 

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Fusiform Gyrus @ HERE

Sam Kulik, Ellen Maddow, Lathan Hardy, Chris DiMeglio, Tom Nelis, Jessica Lurie, Peter Zummo, Paul Zimet

World Premier of Fusiform Gyrus – A Septet for Two Scientists and Five Horns by OBIE Award winner Ellen Maddow

February 13, 2018: OBIE Award winner Ellen Maddow’s new musical piece, Fusiform Gyrus – A Septet for Two Scientists and Five Horns, opened at HERE in a world premier presentation by Talking Band. The 70 -minute musical-theater work written and composed by Maddow is directed by Ellie Heyman, the director in residence at Joe’s Pub.  Fusiform Gyrus runs through February 25, 2018 at HERE, 145 6th Avenue.

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Reviews

Hangmen **1/2

Billy Carter, Richard Hollis, John Horton, Johnny Flynn, Owen Campbell

By: David Sheward

Martin McDonagh takes the phrase “gallows humor” a bit too literally in his new play Hangmen now at the Atlantic Theater Company after hit London runs at the Royal Court and in the West End. As in his previous stage work such as The Beauty Queen of Leenane and The Lieutenant of Inishmore and his Oscar-nominated film Three Billboards Outside of Ebbing, Missouri, the darkly comic playwright offers grisly scenarios of violence and vengeance replete with ironic and ambiguous twists. Just like his earlier plays and films, Hangmen is entertaining, well-structured and funny, but it follows a familiar template and has little new to say other than McDonagh’s usual refrain of “People are bloodthirsty and given half a chance, they’ll slice your throat open over the pettiest little thing, or worse, for no reason at all.”

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Around The Town

Paulanne Simmons Unscripted

Broadway Bound – Not!

Every theater professional wants to be Broadway bound. But is Broadway the best place for every show? The record shows the answer to this question is often no.

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Reviews

In the Body of the World **** He Brought her Heart Back in a Box ***

Eve Ensler

By: David Sheward

Two short, explosive new Off-Broadway works depict wars of race and gender with women’s bodies as the battlefield. Both are intense and earnest, challenging theatergoers’ expectations and perceptions. In the Body of the World from Manhattan Theater Club at City Center marks Eve Ensler’s return to the solo performance format after her landmark Vagina Monologues and The Good Body. Adrienne Kennedy is premiering He Brought Her Heart Back in a Box, her first new work in a decade, at Theater for a New Audience’s Polonsky Shakespeare Center in Brooklyn. Like her previous Obie-winning one-acts Funnyhouse of a Negro, June and Jean in Concert, and Sleep Deprivation Chamber, Heart is an abstract American dreamscape examining the devastation caused by racism. Each work has autobiographical elements, runs for less than two hours and leaves us wanting for more.

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Reviews

In the Body of the World ***1/2

Eve Ensler “In the Body Of The World”

Eve Ensler’s compelling life story is beautifully enhanced by Diane Paulus for MTC.

By: Patrick Christiano

February 8, 2018: Tony Award winner, Eve Ensler, a world-renowned author, playwright and activist, best known for her Obie Award winning play The Vagina Monologues is back on stage at Manhattan Theater Club. Her new monologue, In The Body of The World, based on her acclaimed 2013 memoir of the same name, recounts her experiences surviving uterine cancer. Ensler chronicles in detail the surgeries and medical treatments she endured along with the personal experiences she gleamed from her ordeal with the cancer.

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Reviews

Fire and Air ** X, or Betty Shabazz vs The Nation ***

James Cusati-Moyer Nijinsky “Fire and Air”

By: Isa Goldberg

A fitting metaphor for our times, Rock, Scissors, Paper is a zero-sum game. One man wins and the other loses, so the outcome is nought. It’s a strictly competitive game.

In Terrence McNally’s new play, Fire and Air, at Classic Stage Company, the elements that connect are equally deadly to one another. Air, the symbol of new life, loses its breath when fire destroys it.

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Gordin's View

Drama Desk Reception

Naveen Kumar, Jan Simpson, Jose Solis, Kelundra Smith, Wei-Huan Chen

BroadwayCon Panels Feted

January 26, 2018:  The Drama Desk hosted a reception for critics on the BroadwayCon panels “Being a Critic of Color,” organized by Drama Desk member Jose Solis, and “Theater Critiquing: A Woman’s Touch,” organized by Drama Desk member Linda Armstrong.

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Reviews

Fire and Air **

Marsha Mason, John Glover, Douglas Hodge, Marin Mazzie

By: David Sheward

“Does my enthusiasm exhaust you?,” exclaims Douglas Hodges as Serge Diaghilev in Terrence McNally’s new play Fire and Air about the volatile Russian impresario, his relationships with his star dancers Nijinsky and Massine, and his revolutionary company Ballets Russes. Hodges’ virtuoso turn is indeed exhausting. Every intonation, gesture, and movement expresses the fiery temperament of the implacable visionary who set the stage for some of the greatest works in dance history. But the performance and John Doyle’s fast-paced staging aren’t enough to pull together McNally’s unfocused script and provide a clear, dynamic picture of a genius and his explosive impact on 20th century culture.

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Around The Town

Grand Ole Opry

A Taste of Nashville’s Historic Grand Ole Opry
Comes to New York’s Times Square

By: Ellis Nassour

“Come on in and sit right down and make yourself at home!” sang the legendary Patsy Cline. It was the tune that opened her live shows. Now a huge bit of the history of authentic country music has come to New York’s Times Square with Opry City Stage, 1604 Broadway between 48th and 49th Streets.

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Reviews

The Outsider ****

Paper Mill Playhouse Presents East Coast Premiere of Paul Slade Smith’s The Outsider, Directed by David Esbjornson

By: Ellis Nassour

Paper Mill Playhouse (22 Brookside Drive, Millburn, NJ) scores again – and with a side-splitting comedy of errors (and fun nonsense), The work is the East Coast premiere of Paul Slade Smith’s biting political satire The Outsider (running through February 18).

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Reviews

The Thing With Feathers ****

By: Paulanne Simmons

“Hope” is the thing with feathers in Emily Dickinson’s poem. It “perches in the soul.” It “sings the tune without words.” It is the little Bird that “kept so many warm.” But in Scott Organ’s new play the thing with feathers, now making its premiere with the The Barrow Group Theatre Company, the characters have little hope, with feathers or without.

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Around The Town

Travel Show

Bon Voyage: New York Times Travel Show, January 27 and 28, Celebrates Uncommon Adventures

By: Ellis Nassour

Dorothy said it best in The Wizard of Oz: “There’s no place like home…There’s no place like home!” That is, if you don’t know the Who, What. When, and Wheres of travel. And that’s why there’s the New York Times Travel Show, the largest and longest-running consumer travel show in North America — now in its 15th year. Jet (private or commercial), cruise, and train to your heart’s content this weekend, January 27 and 28, 2018 at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center.

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Reviews

Josephine, A Burlesque Cabaret Dream Play ****1/2 

Tymisha Harris

By: Paulanne Simmons

Although Josephine Baker was a major celebrity in France, during her lifetime she was never a star in her native land. However, more than 40 years after her death there seems to be a spate of shows and books about this highly original woman who delighted onstage and scandalized offstage.

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Features

Phantom of the Opera Celebration

As Theatrical Phenomenon Phantom of the Opera Celebrates 30 Year Reign on Broadway Andrew Lloyd Webber Looks Back

By: Ellis Nassour

A gala performance on Wednesday [January 24] will celebrate Sir Andrew Lloyd Webber and Charles Hart’s The Phantom of the Opera hitting 30 years [actually on January 26, with 12,500 performances – which includes 16 previews] and continuing as Broadway’s longest-running show.

Tony Awards – Michael Crawford sings Music of the Night – 1991 

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