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items tagged with Rob Engelson

Sycamore Treat: "You Can’t Take It with You," at the Clinton Area Showboat Theatre through August 5
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Theatre

Category: Reviews

2007-08-01 09:46:15

You Can't Take It with You ensemble members Thursday's opening-night presentation of You Can't Take It with You at the Clinton Area Showboat Theatre was polished, snappily paced, and almost universally well-performed. But attendance was hardly what it should have been for this venerated Kaufman & Hart comedy - I'd venture that less than two-thirds of the seats were filled - and truth be told, it's not hard to figure out why.


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Lovin’ Summer, Had Me a Blast
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Theatre

Category: Feature Stories

2006-12-20 09:31:03

"Cabaret" In the 11-week period between June 1 and August 12, I saw 28 area productions. And how did you spend your summer vacation?

Considering the overall great time I had last summer, though, I was hardly dreading this relentless schedule. I'd spent 10 whole months eagerly anticipating my return to the Clinton Area Showboat Theatre (CAST), Mt. Carroll's Timber Lake Playhouse, and - for Genesius Guild productions - Rock Island's Lincoln Park; the summer-theatre triad would be responsible for 17 of those 28 offerings. (Summer 2006 would also provide my introduction to Eldridge's Countryside Community Players, whose Cinderella I missed last year.)


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No, You’re the Top!: "Anything Goes," at the Clinton Area Showboat Theatre through July 23
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Theatre

Category: Reviews

2006-07-19 04:32:10

"Anything Goes" ensemble Despite a fairly comprehensive exposure to American musical-theatre classics, it wasn't until last Wednesday that I finally saw a stage production of Anything Goes, currently playing at the Clinton Area Showboat Theatre (CAST). Afterwards, I stopped to say hello to CAST producer, and Anything Goes director, Jay Berkow, and he asked if I'd ever seen the show before. I admitted that I hadn't, and he threw me a sideways grin and said, "This one's a little different. It's not usually done this way."

And I'll tell you what I told him: After this version, why would you want to see it done any other way?


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Murder Ball: "The Mousetrap," at the Clinton Area Showboat Theatre through Sunday, July 8
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Theatre

Category: Reviews

2006-06-28 05:11:22

The Mousetrap As the lights dimmed for the Clinton Area Showboat Theatre's production of The Mousetrap - based on Agatha Christie's mystery novel - I already knew whodunnit. But don't be fooled into thinking that I possess superhuman powers of deduction or anything. I was in a high-school production of the play some 20 years ago. (Fine. Twenty-three years ago. Happy, Mom?)

So I'm not exactly fit to comment on how successfully Christie's murderous plot plays itself out here. Yet my familiarity with the story didn't lessen my enjoyment of CAST's endeavor in the slightest. Quite the contrary: I loved this production, because the vigor with which the Mousetrap ensemble played their comically shady characters was positively exhilarating.


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Play Ball!: "Damn Yankees" at the Clinton Area Showboat Theatre
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Theatre

Category: Reviews

2005-07-20 00:00:00
In the Clinton Area Showboat Theatre’s production of Damn Yankees, the characters you might find yourself adoring the most aren’t the devilish Applegate, or the seductress Lola, or newfound baseball star Joe Hardy, despite the considerable talents of those playing them. They’re Joe and Meg Boyd, whose story sets the plot in motion, and who – as portrayed by Rob Engelson and Nicole Horton – provide the show with more cumulative emotional impact than you might be expecting. Horton isn’t on stage as often as some of her co-stars, and Engelson appears even less frequently, but their spirits hover over the whole production, and it’s not until the last scene that you realize just how much of Damn Yankees’ success rests on how much you like Joe and Meg.
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