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The Show Must Go On: Working When Sick

The 2014-15 theatre season is underway, causing me, desperately, to try not to fret over photos of strangers in first table reads as they begin to train their instruments to say those words (repetitively) throughout the rehearsal process and within eight shows a week (plus student matinees). I see actors hunched in their seats around […]

REVIEW: 'The King and I' at the Marriott Theatre

A fresh and welcome wind is blowing up the Malay Peninsula — well, across the Marriott Lincolnshire golf course, at least — with the famed suburban theater's very fine new production of "The King and I," the debut at that locale of the director Nick Bowling, hitherto known for his...

REVIEW: 'The Inside' by MPAACT at the Greenhouse Theater

Before playwright Lydia Diamond went to Broadway in 2011 with "Stick Fly," her compelling and witty story of a wealthy black family on Martha's Vineyard confronting secrets and prejudices, she honed her voice in small theaters in Chicago. ("Stick Fly" got its world premiere with Congo Square...

Steven Pasquale will lead Lyric's 'Carousel'

The Broadway actor Steven Pasquale, recently a star of "Bridges of Madison County," is to play the role of the carnival barker Billy Bigelow in Rob Ashford's upcoming Lyric Opera of Chicago production of "Carousel," the Lyric announced Wednesday.Pasquale also is known for his work on the TV...

Johnny Cash musical will play Mercury

The music of the man in black is headed to the Southport Corridor this summer as the Mercury Theatre, 3745 N. Southport Ave., plays host to a transfer of last spring's Theatre at the Center production of "Ring of Fire: The Music of Johnny Cash." The Cash musical-- a flop on Broadway in 2006 but...

REVIEW: 'Wild Grass' by Beijing Dance Theater

Making its Chicago debut, Beijing Dance Theater offers proof positive that good dancing doesn't necessarily mean good dance.

Cotovsky will drive the 'Hellcab'

Richard Cotovsky will once again get behind the wheel of the “Hellcab” at Profiles Theatre, the theater has announced. Cotovsky played the driver of the eponymous cab in Will Kern’s play many times during its original production at the now-defunct Famous Door Theatre.

Cheering for The Last Ship Setting Ashore

Every year I hear about the death of the new musical. Wholly original shows -- or, hell, just shows with new scores (it's...

REVIEW: 'Strandline' at A Red Orchid Theatre

In the beginning of Abbie Spallen's dense 2009 drama "Strandline," now in its U.S. premiere at A Red Orchid Theatre, we learn of a man apparently drowned, off the coast of Northern Ireland.

Lyric revisits one of Verdi's toe-tappers with success

When Giuseppe Verdi's "Il Trovatore" premiered in 1853, it was the second of a trio of masterpieces including "Rigoletto" and "La Traviata" that emerged in the composer's "middle" career period and found him developing the art form beyond the traditions of bel canto to a heightened...

How A Christmas Carol can save you and your theatre company

You don’t have to program it during the holidays to sell a bunch of easy tickets. That tactic works for lots of companies though, which made me wonder why. With anything as big as A Christmas Carol, there is more than one reason. Holidays are full of rituals, marking or assuring the smooth recurrence of […]

An actress gets an education in onstage nudity

WASHINGTON — I've been a stage actor for 10 years, but this summer was the first time I've ever considered taking a role with sex scenes and nudity. Despite my apprehensions — how my body would look, how the role would change the way people perceive me, in theater and in real life...

REVIEW: 'The Hundred Flowers Project' by Silk Road Rising ??½

What does it mean to record your experiences even as you're experiencing them? Are you living a life of pastiche, with the cultural influences and opinions of friends and strangers who are just a click away constantly defining and redefining your own perspectives? Or are you a "narrativist" who...

REVIEW: 'Titanic' by Griffin Theatre ????

No Broadway musical of the last two decades is more ill-served by a massive production than Maury Yeston and Peter Stone's “Titanic.” That might seem counterintuitive. The RMS Titanic was a behemoth floating on superlatives. The international obsession with the facts and minutiae of...

'Animal Farm' adds four public performances

Steppenwolf For Young Adults' acclaimed production of "Animal Farm," newly-adapted from George Orwell's novel by Alice Austen and Steve Pickering, will add four more public performances, the theater said on Monday.

Light Opera Works announces 2015 season

Light Opera Works in Evanston, a theater whose productions boast full, original orchestrations of classic musicals, announced its 2015 season on Monday. 

REVIEW: 'The Last Ship' at the Neil Simon Theatre

NEW YORK — As captain of “The Last Ship,” and the one who set this mostly autobiographical and wholly original Broadway musical on its daring course, the great songwriter Sting can take solace in his fleet of lovely melodies and sanguine lyrics, from gentle waltzes to...

The Reviews for The Last Ship are In…

The reviews for The Last Ship are in, and while this dramatic musical may leave you with a rousing, working-man’s ballad in your brain, it may also leave you struggling to describe the plot to your friends.  The new musical, featuring songs by Sting, transports audiences to a once-great shipbuilding town in northern England.  The […]

Bowie dance tribute's delayed gratification pays off

DANCE REVIEW: 'come, been and gone' at MCA Chicago ??? DANCE REVIEW: 'come, been and gone' at MCA Chicago ???

REVIEW: Giordano Dance Chicago ???

A bit of blissed-out Americana, of escapist fantasy, goes down pretty easy these days. And that's what Giordano Dance Chicago delivers with Ray Leeper's new "Feelin' Good Sweet." A former Giordano student, he's gone on to choreograph for music videos and tours, television ("So You Think You Can...

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