These reviews are old!

I'm no longer maintaining this blog. As much as I miss the free tickets and the near-endless supply of wonderful live theater, music, and performance Boston's devoted artistic community provides, I've decided to move onto other personal projects.


There’s Something About Mary: Holland Productions’ “Hideous Progeny”

July 21, 2011

Lake Geneva, 1816. Lord Byron, John Polidori, Percy Shelley and his 18 year old mistress Mary, their baby, and Mary’s stepsister (already pregnant with Byron’s child) are stuck inside during perhaps one of the worst vacation seasons of the past 200 years.


Audio Slideshow: Liars & Believers’ “Song of Songs”

June 5, 2011

A conversation with Jason Slavick, Artistic Director of Liars & Believers on his latest show, “Song of Songs.”


Still like those old time musicals: SpeakEasy’s “The Drowsy Chaperone”

May 26, 2011

SpeakEasy’s production of The Drowsy Chaperone is a perfectly executed comic romp through what is both musical theater’s golden age and awkward adolescence.


“My girlfriend left me and she took her navy with her:” ASP’s “Antony and Cleopatra”

May 10, 2011

Paula Plum and James Andreassi break in the Modern Theatre with Antony and Cleopatra.


Midsummer Dreamscapes: Boston Lyric Opera’s “Dream”

May 6, 2011

BLO closes out its season with a lucid production of Benjamin Britten’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream.


Fringe Academe Goes to Hollywood

April 29, 2011

Edward de Vere wrote Lear? Please, everybody knows it was a gay time traveling alien. Anonymous official trailer on Vimeo.


Daddy’s Girl: Independent Drama Society’s “Eurydice”

April 28, 2011

People seem to love or hate Sarah Ruhl’s Eurydice. Some are drawn into Ruhl’s obscured take on the popular myth (you might even call it a fable) that deviates from the Greek versions by giving Eurydice a daddy in the Underworld, but doesn’t make nearly as many additions, in characterization or plot, as you’d think […]


The Merchant of Wall Street: Theatre for a New Audience’s “Merchant of Venice”

April 6, 2011

I assume Arts Emerson’s program for The Merchant of Venice quotes‘s reporting on Mel Gibson’s notorious antisemitic remarks next to passages by Shakespeare scholar Stephen Greenblatt to demonstrate that the antisemitism of Shakespeare’s Venice is still present today and in the “in-the-near-future” setting of this Theatre for a New Audience production at the Cutler […]


My Husband Burnt My Homework: The Huntington’s “Educating Rita”

March 27, 2011

Adult education in America is usually the pursuit of employable skills, those that relate directly to a better job, a bigger salary, and a higher standard of living. Maybe first a high school diploma, then a degree or certification in something provident like accounting, web design, or human resources. There’s a side to it that’s […]


ERS Services Hemingway’s “The Sun Also Rises”

March 22, 2011

For a book that’s mostly about drinking and eating, it’s no surprise that Elevator Repair Service chose to set their 3 1/2 hour staging of Hemingway’s The Sun Also Rises in a bar, and named it after the CafĂ© Select, the watering hole Hemingway’s emasculated doppelgänger Jake Barnes and his expat circle frequent. Probably due […]


Sex and the City (of Rome): BLO’s “Agrippina”

March 17, 2011

Handel’s “Agrippina” describes the title character’s attempt to install her son Nero as emperor, or at least heir, to her husband (and uncle) Claudius’ throne. You might remember something similar from the last episode of I, Claudius (and Claudius the God), but Handel’s librettist Cardinal Vincenzo Grimani had his own take on things and it […]


Bros Before Hos: SpeakEasy’s “Reasons to Be Pretty”

March 15, 2011

For the first 15 minutes of Neil LaBute’s Reasons to Be Pretty (in a production by SpeakEasy at the BCA through April 2nd) we wait to find out what Greg (Andy Macdonald) said over at his buddy Kent’s (Burt Grinstead) place to piss his girlfriend Steph (Angie Jepson) off so much that she starts tearing […]


Meta-Minimalism and OperaHub’s “The Four-Note Opera”

March 13, 2011

It’s long past the short run of OperaHub‘s production of Tom Johnson’s 1972 The Four-Note Opera, but I owe a few words to this hilarious show from a company that’s doing big things in the fringe opera scene. This production marked the close of their season, as they move to rename and re-orient themselves (and […]


A Shady, Well-Lighted Place: John Kuntz’s “The Hotel Nepenthe”

March 6, 2011

Whatever didn’t work about the vacant retail space home to the Actors’ Shakespeare Project’s winter festival for their production of Cymbeline, makes John Kuntz’s The Hotel Nepenthe look like it was commissioned by the landlord. I thought the space looked too much like the Davis Square Goodwill’s basement for Shakespeare, but here, David R. Gammons’ […]


The Trojan Hurt Locker: The A.R.T.’s “Ajax”

February 24, 2011

Everything about the ART’s production of Sophocles’ Ajax (through March 14th at the Loeb) screams contemporary relevance. David Zinn has the cast dressed in desert fatigues and has installed a kind of abandoned mess hall on the Loeb stage. Athena (Kaaron Briscoe) comes dressed in a (politician’s) business suit and speaks through the cafeteria’s distortive […]


The Actors’ Shakespeare Project opens its new retail location in the heart of Davis Square with “Cymbeline”

February 16, 2011

The vacant Davis Square retail space housing the Actors’ Shakespeare Project’s winter festival doesn’t match up to their usual lush digs in Fort Point, which is probably my favorite theater in Boston. Instead of a trendy brick and beam loft space, we get drop ceilings, harsh fluorescent lighting, and the bass line of whatever the […]


Death in Atlantis: The BLO”s “Emperor of Atlantis”

February 5, 2011

Boston Lyric Opera is nailing it with its Opera Annex productions. Last year’s Turn of the Screw was a hugely anticipated smash hit and this season’s production of Victor Ullmann’s The Emperor of Atlantis is something of a surprise hit, continuing the record of sold-out runs. Obviously, the BCA’s Calderwood Pavilion doesn’t make quite as […]


A Brief History of Buckminster Fuller

January 31, 2011

I can’t imagine a play that could better fit the M.O. of an “academic theater” (if you were to take that epaulet literally) than D.W. Jacobs’ R. Buckminster Fuller: The History (and Mystery) of the Universe. The ART’s current show takes the form of a meandering while didactic lecture, delivered by the inimitable Thomas Derrah. […]


The Best Little Whorehouse in the Congo: The Huntington’s “Ruined”

January 27, 2011

Ruined begins with a comic, romantically-hued scene between grey-market merchant Christian (Oberon K.A. Adjepong) and Mama Nadi (Tonye Patano) at her ramshackle bar deep in the Congolese jungle. Christian makes friendly passes at Nadi, teases her by withholding some lipstick she ordered, and prefers orange Fanta over beer. When it’s time to get down to […]


Independent Drama Society’s “Glengarry Glenn Ross”

January 21, 2011

The Independent Drama Society brings another contemporary classic to the fringe scene.