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items tagged with St. Ambrose University

Say "Uncle"! : Tony Nominee Lee Blessing Debuts His New Comedy at New Ground Theatre, April 29 through May 8
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Theatre

Category: Feature Stories

2016-04-21 12:00:00

Jordan Smith, Bill Peiffer, Jake Walker and Maggie Woolley in UncleAt the very end of Anton Chekhov’s 1897 tragicomedy Uncle Vanya, two of the play’s principal characters – Vanya and his niece Sonya – sit quietly at a table at their Russian estate, each lamenting the departure of their recent house guests. They’ve endured all manner of emotional hardships over the stage hours prior, and as they prepare to face more in the lonely years ahead, Sonya delivers one of theatre’s most famous closing monologues, climaxing her speech by telling Vanya not to fear – God will show pity on them. “We shall rest,” she says, gently, just before the curtain falls. “We shall rest.”

Hopefully, for Vanya and Sonya, 119 years constitutes a long-enough rest. Because thanks to a playwright’s imagination and a rather inconvenient (and fictitious) wormhole, Chekhov’s Uncle Vanya characters are continuing their sagas in author Lee Blessing’s debuting comedy Uncle, a world-premiere production by Davenport’s New Ground Theatre running at the Village Theatre from April 29 through May 8.

“Sometimes you just don’t know where things come from,” says Blessing, with a laugh, regarding his sci-fi-comedy continuation of Chekhov’s masterpiece. “I’d seen a modern update of Vanya not that long ago in Los Angeles, and around the same time I said to myself, ‘Wouldn’t it be interesting to write a play about a guy who suddenly has a cosmic wormhole open up in his backyard, but doesn’t want it? Doesn’t want the things that come out of it?’ And so, for some odd reason, I put those things together."
Read More About Say "Uncle"! : Tony Nominee Lee Blessing Debuts His New Comedy At New Ground Theatre, April 29 Through May 8...


Bumble, Fumble, Toil, and Tumble: "Noises Off," at St. Ambrose University through April 17
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Theatre

Category: Reviews

2016-04-14 16:11:04

Jackson Green, Jordan Webster-Moore, and  Becca Brazel in Noises OffMichael Frayn’s 1982 comedy Noises Off, which will be performed by the St. Ambrose theatre department this weekend, is a fast-paced, riotously wacky farce full of witty lines and tremendous physical comedy, and I can’t believe that, prior to Tuesday night’s rehearsal, I had never seen it before. This has, indeed, been my loss.
Read More About Bumble, Fumble, Toil, And Tumble: "Noises Off," At St. Ambrose University Through April 17...


Center-Stage Craft: Spotlight Turns with the Reader’s Theatre Reviewers
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Theatre

Category: Feature Stories

2015-12-23 12:00:00

Center-Stage CraftThe ends of calendar years always bring with them a certain amount of reflection, and questions that we find ourselves quietly grappling with. “Did I achieve personal fulfillment and happiness?” “Were there people I improperly appreciated or unintentionally wronged?” “What are we going to do about the Reader’s annual year-in-theatre article now that Thom White has moved to Kentucky?!”
Read More About Center-Stage Craft: Spotlight Turns With The Reader’S Theatre Reviewers...


Recess Monkeys: Junie B. in Jingle Bells, Batman Smells, at St. Ambrose University December 5 and 6
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Theatre

Category: Reviews

2015-12-04 00:41:17

Kayla Lansing, Jordan Webster-Moore, Helene DeVine, Simon Khoury, and Jonathan J.J. Johnson in Junie B. in Jingle Bells, Batman SmellsArriving for the 10 a.m. production of St. Ambrose University’s Junie B. in Jingle Bells, Batman Smells on December 3, what first caught my eye were the big yellow school buses parked outside, and I realized, “Ah, yes, I’m going back to elementary school today.” (This was a scheduled school performance not open to the general public.) Inside the Galvin Fine Arts Center, I was transported into a first-grade “classroom” that consisted of Junie B. Jones and her friends on stage and the elementary students who filled the large auditorium to capacity. The juxtaposition of the joyous, high energy in this “classroom” and my feelings roused from recent world and national tragedies made me think about the world we have made for these children, wherein their innocence will be lost all too soon, and the more that laughter rang in the room, the more poignant my feelings became.
Read More About Recess Monkeys: Junie B. In Jingle Bells, Batman Smells, At St. Ambrose University December 5 And 6...


Trial and Tribulation: "Parade," at St. Ambrose University through October 11
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Theatre

Category: Reviews

2015-10-11 18:19:42

Kayla Lansing and Sam Jones in ParadeWas it justice or discrimination? That is what you'll likely be asking yourself after leaving St. Ambrose University's production of Parade. It takes a mature, professional cast to pull off a musical centered around racism, bigotry, and murder, but these actors do just that. Director Daniel Rairdin-Hale brings the true story of the trial of Leo Frank and its aftermath to life in such a way that I entirely forgot I was at a student production, and Thursday night’s dress rehearsal was as close to show-ready as possible.
Read More About Trial And Tribulation: "Parade," At St. Ambrose University Through October 11...





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