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items tagged with Brian Nelson

Bible Versus: "Hard to Believe," at the Playcrafters Barn Theatre through September 19
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Theatre

Category: Reviews

2010-09-13 12:00:00

Wendy Czekalski and Paul Workman in Hard to BelieveI have little doubt that many patrons of the Playcrafters Barn Theatre will enjoy its current production of Hard to Believe, as there’s consistently an audience appetite for shows on themes of faith and God. The opening-night premiere of this locally written musical, however, reminded me too much of church performances of which I’ve seen or been a part. I’m not sure Hard to Believe will find a place in community theatres alongside other musicals, but it could very well find its place within many a church’s walls.


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Roll ‘em Easy: "Guys & Dolls," at the Prospect Park Auditorium through June 20
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Theatre

Category: Reviews

2010-06-14 12:00:00

J. Adam Lounsberry, Tracy Pelzer-Timm, Jenny Winn, and Nathan Bates in Guys & DollsWith its whopping cast size and an equally daunting song list, Guys & Dolls doesn't seem like the best choice for a rookie director. But that didn't stop local actor Jason Platt from taking the helm of Quad City Music Guild's first summer offering, and making a darned good run of it. To be sure, the Thursday-night preview show either needed a few major cuts to shave off at least 20 minutes of the two-hours-and-50-minute (including intermission) run time, or a quicker musical pace set by music director Charles DCamp. However, the lead vocal performances were phenomenal, the female dance numbers were great fun to watch, and the set design and high-quality costumes effectively represented New York City, circa 1940.


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Eight Times Five: Ensembles, Musical Numbers, Stagecraft, Couples, Newcomers, Collegiate Performers, Minors, & Exits
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Theatre

Category: Feature Stories

2009-12-21 12:00:00

Five Inspiring Ensembles

Powerful lead performances and scene-stealing supporting turns are always welcome; one- and two-character shows can be a gas. But for my money, nothing quite beats the theatrical pleasure of watching a tightly knit ensemble in action, and the following five productions ensured that this pleasure was a continual one.

 


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Ocean Breeze: "South Pacific," at North Scott High School through June 27
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Theatre

Category: Reviews

2009-06-22 22:13:08

Andrea Millea and Joe Urbaitis in South PacificSouth Pacific comes to us with an intimidating load of pedigreed baggage: Pulitzer Prizes, Tony Awards, Rodgers & Hammerstein. And if you add its dramatic World War II setting, its themes of interracial romance and prejudice, its enormous scenic drops and set pieces, and its cast of two dozen plus, it'd be enough for Countryside Community Theatre's current production of the piece to be impressive, and it most certainly is that.


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Summer’s Stock: May through August with the Area’s Seasonal Theatre Troupes
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Theatre

Category: Feature Stories

2008-12-16 15:39:15

Andy Koski and Aisha Ragheb in Romeo and Juliet More than a third of the area productions I attended this year - a whopping 35 of them - I saw in the 91-day span from May 17 to August 15. And more than half of those shows - 19 in all - were produced by a combined five theatre organizations: Rock Island's Genesius Guild, Eldridge's Countryside Community Theatre, the Clinton Area Showboat Theatre (CAST), Mt. Carroll's Timber Lake Playhouse, and Davenport's newly established Riverbend Theatre Collective. My experiences with this quintet formed a fascinating theatrical journey, one boasting plenty of highs, occasional lows, randomly bitchy Web-site comments ... .


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