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items tagged with Irving Berlin

Fuzzy and Furry: "Ted 2" and "Max"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2015-06-29 02:30:27

Mark Wahlberg and Seth MacFarlane-ish in Ted 2TED 2

Every fan of Family Guy knows that when he wants to, Seth MacFarlane can be really offensive. (I am in no way a fan of Family Guy, and even I know that.) But the biggest problem with MacFarlane’s Ted 2 – which is likely to at least occasionally infuriate anyone who isn’t a white, straight alpha-bro – isn’t that it’s offensive; it’s that it’s too often sincere. This is a movie in which Morgan Freeman, as a benevolent civil-rights attorney, invokes the 16th Amendment and the Emancipation Proclamation when arguing for the rights of a talking teddy bear, with the scene’s moved onlookers and swelling score matching him in earnestness and integrity. My audience, meanwhile, watched and listened to Freeman’s impassioned oration in what felt like stunned silence. Can MacFarlane possibly be serious about this – that his foul-mouthed teddy’s rights are equal to those of hundreds of thousands of disenfranchised human beings? And if he’s not serious, why isn’t this scene in any way funny?
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Just for the Mel of It: "Young Frankenstein," at the Prospect Park Auditorium through June 21
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Theatre

Category: Reviews

2015-06-15 12:00:00

Nate Karstens, Abbey Donohoe, and Ian Sodawasser in Young FrankensteinOn at least three occasions during Thursday’s preview performance, Quad City Music Guild’s Young Frankenstein achieved a transcendent silliness – the kind you get with stunning regularity in Mel Brooks’ film-spoof inspiration. If you include everything said and done by Nate Karstens’ hunchback Igor, it was more like 203 occasions, but in the spirit of this tasty musical confection, let’s save the sweetest for dessert.
Read More About Just For The Mel Of It: "Young Frankenstein," At The Prospect Park Auditorium Through June 21...


It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like ... : "Irving Berlin's White Christmas," at the Circa '21 Dinner Playhouse through December 28
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Theatre

Category: Reviews

2014-11-10 12:00:00

the Irving Berlin's White Christmas ensembleAnnoyed by local radio stations that switch to 24 hours of holiday music on November 5, as well as stores that set up holiday displays before Halloween, I wasn’t all that keen on seeing a Christmas musical in early November. However, Irving Berlin’s White Christmas is my kind of holiday production: It’s light on its emphasis on Christmas cheer, and plays out as a musical that just happens to take place ahead of the holidays.


Read More About It's Beginning To Look A Lot Like ... : "Irving Berlin's White Christmas," At The Circa '21 Dinner Playhouse Through December 28...


How the West Was Wonderful: "Annie Get Your Gun," at the Clinton Area Showboat Theatre through June 29
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Theatre

Category: Reviews

2014-06-23 12:01:00

Nathan McHenry and Heather Baisley (center) and ensemble members in Annie Get Your GunThere were moments during Friday’s performance of Annie Get Your Gun at the Clinton Area Showboat Theatre in which I forgot that I was watching a performance. That is to say, the audience around me disappeared as I became lost in the production, and particularly captivated by Heather Baisley’s Annie Oakley. This, for me, was a true escapist experience: I was absolutely taken in by Baisley’s fantastic portrayal.


Read More About How The West Was Wonderful: "Annie Get Your Gun," At The Clinton Area Showboat Theatre Through June 29...


Oldies and Goodies: "Let's Face the Music: A New Musical Revue," at the District Theatre through September 15
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Theatre

Category: Reviews

2013-09-09 12:00:00

Wendy Czekalski, Sheri Olson, Bryan Tank, and Erin Lounsberry in Let's Face the Music: A New Musical RevueLet’s Face the Music: A New Musical Revue is a production of songs by Irving Berlin, Cole Porter, and George and Ira Gershwin, conceived and directed by Lora Adams, and performed by four of the best singers (and one of the best dancers) in the area-theatre community. While the tempo and energy of the numbers change, the District Theatre’s presentation maintains a mellow mood throughout the hour-long show, with the only glaring fault in Saturday's performance being that the piece wasn't also presented in a 1940s nightclub, so that the audience could complete the experience by stepping into the period presented on stage.


Read More About Oldies And Goodies: "Let's Face The Music: A New Musical Revue," At The District Theatre Through September 15...





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