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items tagged with Timber Lake Playhouse

If It Only Had a Heart: "The Wizard of Oz," at the Timber Lake Playhouse through August 6
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Theatre

Category: Reviews

2006-08-02 05:08:35

I am prepared to ignore and/or forgive the technical glitches that accompanied the opening-night performance of The Wizard of Oz at the Timber Lake Playhouse, and this is no small task, as the glitches in question caused the production, at times, to be borderline embarrassing.

Yes, the monkeys flew, as did the Wicked Witch of the West and a bizarre creature called the Jitterbug, and when the flying effects worked, they were magical. Our first airborne sight, in fact - that of Miss Gulch pedaling her bicycle across the stage - earned a rousing ovation from the audience and deserved it, and the twirling, chirping winged monkeys were sensational; at sporadic moments, this Wizard of Oz was as fanciful and enchanting as you wanted it to be.


Read More About If It Only Had A Heart: "The Wizard Of Oz," At The Timber Lake Playhouse Through August 6...


Abra Cadaver: "Tom, Dick, & Harry," at the Timber Lake Playhouse through July 22
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Theatre

Category: Reviews

2006-07-19 04:29:08

tomdickharry_thumb Most theatregoers have at least one genre that they simply can't get on board with. Some can't abide tragic plays - "I get enough drama in life" is their common refrain - and some don't like musicals, and there's an untitled genre that many people, sadly, seem to be petrified of: Shows I've Never Heard of Before.

The latest presentation at the Timber Lake Playhouse is entitled Tom, Dick, & Harry, which is a play that I'd never heard of before, but which also falls under the category of my least favorite genre: the slapstick farce. More often than not, shows of this ilk all seem the same to me: 20 minutes of protracted exposition and character introduction, an hour-plus of forced wackiness resulting from a series of misunderstandings, a few moments of maudlin sentimentality - to make us care about these people? - and a tidy wrap-up, with "naughty" double entendres and obvious, ba-dum-ching! punchlines sprinkled throughout. Many audiences love this stuff; I generally find the relentless bonhomie of it all depressing.

So it's no small praise to say that I really enjoyed Timber Lake's Tom, Dick, & Harry, even though my reasons for enjoying it don't have much to do with Tom, Dick, & Harry.


Read More About Abra Cadaver: "Tom, Dick, & Harry," At The Timber Lake Playhouse Through July 22...


Number One: "Urinetown," at the Timber Lake Playhouse through Sunday, July 9
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Theatre

Category: Reviews

2006-07-05 04:37:07

"Urinetown" ensemble In the second act of the magnificent musical parody Urinetown, the character of Bobby Strong - a novice revolutionary, and the show's ostensible leading man - sings "Run, Freedom, Run," a rousing call-to-arms to his fellow oppressed. The number, a sort of "Sit Down, You're Rockin' the Boat" from Guys & Dolls as seen through a Les Miserables filter, is one of those guaranteed show-stoppers designed to leave audiences cheering. At the Timber Lake Playhouse's Saturday-night performance of the show, however, this production number led to something even more thrilling.


Read More About Number One: "Urinetown," At The Timber Lake Playhouse Through Sunday, July 9...


What’s the Story?: "The Philadelphia Story," at the Timber Lake Playhouse through June 24
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Theatre

Category: Reviews

2006-06-21 04:45:45

The Philadelphia Story The morning after attending the Timber Lake Playhouse's production of the romantic comedy The Philadelphia Story, I drove to my local video store and rented the DVD of the beloved 1940 film, which I had never seen. I would love to report that Timber Lake's production put me in such a happy state that I was simply eager to re-live the stage experience. But unfortunately, the rental was more of a necessity than an indulgence; I had to see what about Philip Barry's play made the movie such a treasure, because its reputed charms, sadly, weren't at all apparent on the Mt. Carroll stage.


Read More About What’S The Story?: "The Philadelphia Story," At The Timber Lake Playhouse Through June 24...


Old-Fashioned Entertainment with the "Modern" Touch: "Thoroughly Modern Millie" at Timber Lake
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Theatre

Category: Reviews

2006-06-07 05:30:48

Erin Childs and Seth LieberFrom the Quad Cities, a trip to the Timber Lake Playhouse will take roughly 80 minutes. But I was so happy to be returning to Mt. Carroll, Illinois, for its 2006 season opener, Thoroughly Modern Millie, that I don't think I stopped smiling once during the entire trek. The theatre's 2005 presentations of The Full Monty and The Hunchback of Notre Dame were, for me, two of last summer's absolute high points - both shows beautifully staged and refreshingly risky - and the venue itself, nestled in the woods, is large and inviting, with its productions boasting terrific design and costumes and a game, go-for-broke ensemble. It was a thrill to be returning after 10 months.

 


Read More About Old-Fashioned Entertainment With The "Modern" Touch: "Thoroughly Modern Millie" At Timber Lake...





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