Reviews

EXTINCTION at Guild Hall

Gabe McKinley’s dark, yet funny drama Extinction opens at Guild Hall in East Hampton

By: Patrick Christiano

Josh Gladstone, Artistic Director of Guild Hall, helms a strong production of Extinction starring Sawyer Spielberg as Finn and Eric Svendsen as Max. The actors turn in impressive work as two friends at odds with one another in Gabe McKinley’s scorching drama. The story about male bonding is set in adjoining rooms circa 2007 at The Borgata Hotel in Atlantic City, where the two long-time college buddies have come to renew their bond, or have they?

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Around The Town

2017 Tomatoes Got Talent

The “4th Annual Tomatoes Got Talent” show took place on Monday April 3, 2017 at The Triad, 158 West 72nd St., playing to a sold-out crowd!

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Around The Town

2017 Miscast Gala

By: Iris Wiener

Norbert Leo Butz as Dreamgirls’ Effie. Carmen Cusack as Hamilton’s King George. Kelli O’Hara as Charlie and the Chocolate Factory’s Willy Wonka. The evening’s line-up reads like an April Fool’s joke, but casting this unique is par for the course at MCC Theater’s annual Miscast gala, which was held Monday night at Hammerstein Ballroom. Now celebrating its 30th year, MCC produces the event to help fund their Off-Broadway work, in addition to supporting their Youth Company and in-school partnerships that serve New York City public high school students.

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Reviews

Joan of Arc: Into the Fire ****

Jo Lampert

By: Paulanne Simmons

Joan of Arc, also known as “The Maid of Orleans” and “St. Joan,” has been a source of artistic inspiration for centuries. As early as 1429, when the peasant warrior was still alive, Christine de Pizan wrote a poem eulogizing her. In 1801, Friedrich Schiller wrote Die Jungfrau von Orleans, a tragedy based on her life, which Tchaikovsky turned into an opera. Subsequently, George Bernard Shaw, Bertolt Brecht, Maxwell Anderson and Jean Anouilh all dramatized her life.

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Bette Midler to be Honored @ The Drama League

Bette Midler

Put on your Sunday clothes!  The Drama League (Executive Artistic Director Gabriel Stelian-Shanks) will honor Grammy® and Emmy® Award-winning, icon Bette Midler with the Distinguished Achievement in Musical Theater Award at this year’s 83rd Annual Drama League Awards, set for Friday afternoon, May 19, 2017 at the Marriott Marquis Times Square (1535 Broadway)

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Features

American Musicals Dominate London

American Musicals Dominate London’s West End
By: 
Ellis Nassour

Broadway is big business on London’s West End, and not just because of U.S. and Asian tourists. Soon there’ll be 11 musicals which originated here.

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Gordin's View

Extinction @ Guild Hall

Brynne Kraynak, Eric Svendsen, Raye Levine, Sawyer Spielberg, Josh Gladstone

Opening Night Photos from Gabe McKinley’s dark yet funny drama Extinction, strongly helmed by Josh Gladstone and starring Sawyer Spielberg (Steven Spielberg’s son) and Eric Svendsen with Brynne Kraynak, Raye Levine.
Click Here for Full Review
Photography: Barry Gordin

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Paulanne Simmons Unscripted

Theater and the Seamy Side of Life

Write a play about two middle-aged couples and a polyamorous co-worker (plus her two boyfriends) who welcome in the new year with an orgy.  End act one with one of the couples’ 17-year-old daughter surprising them en flagrant déit. Critics will hail the work for its penetrating insight. 

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Reviews

Ring Twice For Miranda ***

Katie Kleiger, George Merrick

Dark comedy by filmmaker/playwright/director/novelist Alan Hruska at NY Center Stage II.

By: Patrick Christiano

There are hard times outside Sir’s mansion in Ring Twice for Miranda, Alan Hruska’s satire on power, but inside the chambermaid Maranda and her former lover, the butler Elliot, are well fed, warm and cozy. Their relationship has recently hit the skids much to Elliot’s chagrin, and as they pass time in the servant’s wing waiting for Sir, who rules the nameless district, to break their tedium, Elliot begs Miranda for access to her bed once more.  A massive wall of 24 bells hangs nearby, where one ring is for Elliot and twice is for Miranda.  Clearly Miranda performs some special function for Sir, which she insists is non-sexual, nonetheless Elliot is jealous and doesn’t believe her.

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Reviews

Diva: Live from Hell ***

Sean Patrick Monahan

A demented Diva’s downfall plays out in a dark musical satire by Sean Patrick Monahan and Alexander Sage Oyen

By: Patrick Christiano

The immensely gifted Sean Patrick Monahan is Desmond Channing, a demented teenager with delusions of grandeur, in his new musical, Diva: Live from Hell, a dark comedic sendup of madness directed with smart intensity by Daniel Goldstein at Theater for the New City’s Community Space through April 9th. Monahan also wrote the book and plays all the characters in Diva with more than serviceable music and lyrics by Alexander Sage Oyen. One ballad concerning unrequited love is excellent. Musical accompaniment is a nifty trio of Sammy Wags (drums), Rob Taylor (double bass), and Evan Tylor (piano and sound mixer).

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Around The Town

Siona Benjamin @ ACA Galleries

Siona Benjamin:  Beyond Borders

ACA Galleries, 529 West 20th Street, in the Gallery district will host a conversation with Artist Siona Benjamin and Professor Ori Z. Soltes on Saturday, April 1 from 2 to 4 pm.

 Siona Benjamin’s works are currently on display at ACA Galleries through April 22, 2017.

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Reviews

Sweat at Studio 54 ****

John Earl Jelks, Michelle Wilson, Johanna Day, Alison Wright, and James Colby in background.

Explosive new drama by Pulitzer Prize winning playwright Lynn Nottage.
By: Patrick Christiano

Following an Off-Broadway run at The Public Theatre last fall, Sweat, a timely new play by Lynn Nottage, opened on Broadway at Studio 54 on March 26. The cast is the same with the exception of Alison Wright, who replaces Miriam Shor as Jessie. The following is Patrick Christiano’s review of the Off-Broadway production for TheaterLife.

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Around The Town

Ashley Griffins’ “Snow”

On Monday April 3rd at 12:30pm, Rachel Klein (Around The World in 80 Days, More Than All The World) / directs a reading of SNOW – a new play by Ashley Griffin (creator of the pop culture phenomenon Forever Deadward) – at PLAYWRIGHTS HORIZONS (416 West 42rd St, between 9th and 10th avenues, South Rehearsal Studio.)

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Reviews

The Price **** 1/2

Mark Ruffalo, Danny DeVito in Arthur Miller’s “The Price”

By: Isa Goldberg

Having found The Price to be an oddly quotidian play, given that Arthur Miller wrote it, it is an unexpected pleasure to see this revival by The Roundabout Theatre, at the American Airlines Theatre on Broadway. Under Terry Kinney’s insightful direction, this revival is, most importantly, comic, which is a damn good thing when you’re sitting in an attic filled with memories of the 1929 stock market crash. Here we meet the two surviving brothers, Victor, an understated Mark Ruffalo, his wife, an optimistic, albeit disappointed Jessica Hecht, and his brother Walter, Tony Shalhoub. While outgoing and generous, Shalhoub’s Walter, spares no one from his personal sense of justice.

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Reviews

Sunday In The Park with George **** 1/2

Jake Gyllenhaal in “Sunday in the Park with George”

By: Isa Goldberg

Looking haggard and deep in thought, Jake Gyllenhaall makes his Broadway musical debut as George Seurat in this, the second Broadway revival of Stephen Sondheim’s Sunday In The Park with George. Watching this production at a Wednesday matinee, the audience greeted Gyllenhaal with an unprecedented silence – a rare moment of respect for a movie star, while Annaleigh Ashford (Dot), who makes her entrance just moments after his, received thunderous applause. A Broadway legend, in her own day, Ashford delivers a subtle performance – as serious as it is humorous.

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