Let's Talk Off Broadway

Yvonne Korshak reviews Off-Broadway, Broadway, Film and Art

Category: Off-Broadway Theater (Page 1 of 30)

Jules Feiffer's "The Man in the Ceiling" at Bay Street Theater, Sag Harbor, L.I., NY

OFF-BROADWAY IN SAG HARBOR The Man in the Ceiling | Book by Jules Feiffer | Music and Lyrics by Andrew Lippa | Bay Street Theater

… segregation … 

The idea of this new musical show is that the world can be rough on for a little boy with a big imagination. Unfortunately this show can be rough on the audience.

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REVIEW ROTTERDAM | by Jon Brittain | Directed by Donnacadh O’Briain | 59E59 Theaters

… love and gender …

Fiona (Anna Martine Freeman) and Alice (Alice McCarthy) are two young women lovers, expatriate Brits living in Rotterdam.  On the very evening that Alice is composing an email to her parents to finally let them know that she is gay, Fiona drops a bombshell:  she tells Alice that she, Fiona, is truly a transgender man, and that she intends to transition to being physically male.

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REVIEW The Antipodes | By Annie Baker | SignatureTheatre

… bored room …

The Antipodes is a distasteful play.

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Cast of Antigone by Jean Anouilh, adapted merging text and opera by Eilin O'Dea. Translated by Lewis Galantiere

REVIEW Antigone | By Jean Anouilh | Translated by Lewis Galantière | Fusion Theatre

                                                … the force of destiny …

Here’s an amazing experience!   You walk into a small off-Broadway theater.  The stage is about as minimal as can be – mainly there’s a baffle board at the back and an upright piano to the side.  Early on  Antigone, kneeling, agonized by Creon’s order forbidding burial for the body of her rebellious brother, expresses her anguish with an operatic soprano aria, “Pace, pace, mio Dio”  from Verdi’s La Forza del destino.  What a shock!  And what a way to convey intense emotion in a play.

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REVIEW  Vanity Fair | By Kate Hamill | Adapted from William Makepeace Thackeray’s Novel | The Pearl Theatre

… all the world’s a vanity fair … 

This is a mind-expanding production of Vanity Fair.  It’s also funny, extravagant and visually fascinating.

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L-R Carol Starks, Derek Hutchinson, Annie Jackson, Brian Protheroe and Richenda Carey. Photo Carol Rosegg. In J. B. Priestley's The Roundabout at 59E59 Theaters

REVIEW  The Roundabout | By J. B. Priestley | Directed by Hugh Ross | 59E59 Theaters

… fun! …

See this play and you’ll have a good time!

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A. A. Milne and Christopher Robin Milne. Photo Howard Coster, half-plate film negative, 1926. rightsandimages@npg.org.uk

REVIEW  The Lucky One | By A. A. Milne | Mint Theater Company | Directed by Jesse Marchese

… not so lucky … 

Set in a well-to-do English environment of the early twentieth century, The Lucky One is a story of two brothers:  Gerald (Robert David Grant), the younger, the parents’ favorite, is blithely successful at everything, from sports, to girl friends, to his big job in the foreign office.  Bob (Ari Brand), farmed out to a barrister’s office where he never should have been (but then, where should he be?), seethes with jealousy and bitterness.

And now the primal insult: Gerald has stolen Bob’s girl, Pamela (Paton Ashbrook).

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Gary McNair in A Gambler's Guide to Dying. Photo: Benjamin Cowie

REVIEW A Gambler’s Guide to Dying | Written and Performed by Gary McNair | Directed by Gareth Nicholls | 59E59 Theaters

storytelling

Actor-author Gary McNair recounts his granddad’s excitement at winning a big bet on the 1966 World Cup, and a lifelong quest to recreate the thrill.

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REVIEW | OSLO | By J. T. Rogers | Directed by Bartlett Sher | Vivian Beaumont Theater at Lincoln Center

… at the gates of war … 

No conflicts seem more stubbornly unsolvable in modern politics and history than the hostilities  between Israelis and Arabs.   How fascinating that there were, in fact, secret negotiations between Israel and the Palestine Liberation Organization, enabled by idealistic,  peace-seeking Norwegians, that resulted in a signed agreement in 1993, the first of the Oslo accords.   Oslo tells the that story in such a way that the audience is caught up in the suspense of high stakes history.

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REVIEW | Les Bonnes/The Maids | By Jean Genet | Directed by Oliver Henzler | La MAMA |

… oppression  …

Enter the weird world of Claire and Solange – the world of what oppression does to the human spirit.

The language is brilliant and stunningly expressed by two great actresses in this production, the psychological twists and freehand switches on role playing are the products of a stupendous dramatic imagination. But unlike the actual notorious murder that inspired the play, the Papin case, the maids, not the mistress, are the ultimate victims.  The author’s profound reversal of the expected ending raises this play from a shocking oddity of kinky love-hate relationships (which it is!) to the level of a true classic.  To have seen this great, passionate production is a life treasure.

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