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River Cities' Reader | Theatre
No Taxation Without (Satiric) Representation: “The Acharnians,” at Lincoln Park through August 4 PDF Print E-mail
Reviews
Written by Thom White   
Monday, 29 July 2013 06:00

Calvin Vo and Bryan Woods in The AcharniansThis year’s end-of-season Greek comedy by Genesius Guild, The Acharnians, is high on political humor, musical numbers, and sharply funny barbs at the expense of local organizations – especially Genesis Health System and Trinity Regional Health System (now UnityPoint Health) – and the cities of Moline, Davenport, and Rock Island. And I was smiling from ear to ear during almost the entirety of Saturday’s performance, tickled by the clever jokes, amusing songs, and even the groan-worthy puns.

 
He and His Shadow: "Peter Pan," at the Prospect Park Auditorium through July 21 PDF Print E-mail
Reviews
Written by Mike Schulz   
Monday, 15 July 2013 06:00

Sarah Lounsberry in Peter PanQuad City Music Guild’s Thursday-night preview performance of Peter Pan – which, it should be stressed, was still technically a rehearsal – clocked in at roughly an hour and 55 minutes, making director Beth Marsoun’s presentation at least a half-hour shorter than any of the four other Peter Pans I’ve thus far seen on stage. This proved, at alternating times, to be both a very good thing and a rather unfortunate thing. But let’s start with the good.

 
Saturday Bloody Saturday: "Coriolanus," at Lincoln Park through July 21 PDF Print E-mail
Reviews
Written by Thom White   
Monday, 15 July 2013 06:00

Bob Hanske and Tyler Henning in CoriolanusIt's always a pleasure to be able to laud the chorus members of a production, and that's certainly appropriate for Genesius Guild’s presentation of Shakespeare’s Coriolanus; the crowd scenes involving the Roman citizens – a group made up of 15 actors – are some of the most dynamic moments in co-directors Bryan Woods’ and Don Wooten’s production. Usually seen angrily protesting something, there’s a palpable energy in these performers' collective presence as the group storms the stage and creates a general hubbub in the background, adding more realism than would be on display had they merely stood in place and interjected occasional comments. Stirring things up beginning with the opening scene, and appearing multiple times throughout the course of the play, this charismatic group sets the stage for what proves to be an entertaining evening.

 
Golf Ball: "The Fox on the Fairway," at the Playcrafters Barn Theatre through July 21 PDF Print E-mail
Reviews
Written by Thom White   
Monday, 15 July 2013 06:00

Melissa Scott, Mike Kelly, Clare VanEchaute, Alex Richardson, Mollie A. Schmelzer, and Greg Bouljon in The Fox on the FairwayThe Playcrafters Barn Theatre’s production of The Fox on the Fairway is a bit of a conundrum, as the script isn’t as consistently funny as much of playwright Ken Ludwig’s other fare, specifically Lend Me a Tenor and Moon Over Buffalo. But his tale of rival golf clubs duking it out at their annual tournament remains riveting nonetheless. While the laughs were there during Friday’s performance – and those laughs were oftentimes hearty, if not as plentiful as they could’ve been – it was the uncertainty regarding which direction Ludwig's tale would go, and the outcome of his plot, that maintained interest in this story.

 
Boo! Hiss! Hooray!: "The Curse of an Aching Heart: Or, Trapped in the Spider's Web," at the Richmond Hill Barn Theatre through July 21 PDF Print E-mail
Reviews
Written by Thom White   
Monday, 15 July 2013 06:00

Jackie Patterson, Jackie Skiles, and Sarah Ade in The Curse of an Aching Heart: Or, Trapped in the Spider's WebSo far as melodramas go, The Curse of an Aching Heart: Or, Trapped in the Spider's Web is, for me, one of the more tolerable and entertaining works in its genre. Not being a fan of this brand of comedy, I still laughed quite a bit during Thursday’s performance at the Richmond Hill Barn Theatre, as playwright Herbert Swayne’s clever wit and director Tom Morrow’s pleasingly on-the-verge-of-over-dramatic tone made for an amusing night of comedy.

 
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