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Theatre
Buy Local: "Bad Habits," at the Village Theatre through February 5 PDF Print E-mail
Reviews
Written by Thom White   
Monday, 23 January 2012 06:00

Josh LeFebreve and Dana Moss-Peterson in Bad HabitsNew Ground Theatre’s Bad Habits is one of those rare local productions where the focus is on the writers rather than the actors, directors, or technical aspects. While a cast and crew, of course, are involved, the work gathers short plays written by local playwrights. Running a touch more than an hour, Thursday’s performance showcased the promise of these local wordsmiths, while also revealing areas on which they need to focus as they work on their next pieces – the most notable being writing as people would actually speak.

 
The Gables Are Always Greener ... : "Anne of Avonlea," at the Playcrafters Barn Theatre through January 22 PDF Print E-mail
Reviews
Written by Thom White   
Monday, 16 January 2012 06:00

Sydney Crumbleholme and Ben Klocke in Anne of AvonleaSydney Crumbleholme is maturing. Not only is she physically more mature than the impressive young acting prodigy I fondly recall from the Playcrafters Barn Theatre’s Anne of Green Gables four years ago, she’s also much more skilled as an actress – and that “much more” is particularly impressive considering that Crumbleholme’s previous work was astounding, particularly for her age. In her return to the title role of Playcrafters’ current production, Anne of Avonlea, Crumbleholme shows distinct growth as an actress, showcasing knacks for nuance and subtlety. She alone is worth the money and time spent seeing the show.

 
Kind of Smooth, Kind of Sticky: "Grease," at the Circa '21 Dinner Playhouse through March 3 PDF Print E-mail
Reviews
Written by Thom White   
Monday, 16 January 2012 06:00

Lisa Carter and Aaron Alan in GreaseI adore the movie version of Grease, and think it's one of the few musicals in which the film is an improvement on the original stage version. The theatrical musical is less cohesive in terms of the timelime's flow, forcing the audience to fill in the gaps between scenes, and I kind of hate that about it – unless a stage production transcends the script's weakness, in which case, like the movie, I love it. However, while I did not hate Friday's performance of Grease at the Circa '21 Dinner Playhouse, I didn't exactly love it, either.

 
All the Worlds of Stage: Mike Schulz and Thom White Discuss Area Theatre in 2011 PDF Print E-mail
Feature Stories
Written by Mike Schulz   
Thursday, 15 December 2011 11:53

Tom Walljasper, Kristin Gilbert, and John Payonk in HairsprayThe Reader's chief theatre reviewer, Thom White, saw and wrote about 52 area stage productions in 2011. I saw 39 and reviewed 12. Obviously, during our second-annual breakfast chat on the Year in Theatre, there was a bit to talk about.

 
False Profit: "Tartuffe," at Skellington Manor through December 11 PDF Print E-mail
Reviews
Written by Thom White   
Monday, 05 December 2011 08:00

(left to right, from the top) Tartuffe's Brianne Kinney, James Driscoll, Jessica Sheridan, Kitty Israel, Denise Yoder, Stephanie Moeller, Angetha Rathman, Jeb Makula, and Andy CurtissThere are so many smart line deliveries in the Prenzie Players’ Tartuffe that I could gush over each one here and still not have space for half of them. From Stephanie Moeller’s forceful proclamation “I’m timid!” to Jessica Sheridan’s delightfully wicked warning about being stuck with the unbearable title character “each day ... and night ... for life,” Friday’s performance had me cackling over and over again. I won’t, however, point to any more specific line interpretations, for fear of ruining the element of surprise. A large part of the production’s humor lies in hearing its words delivered in unexpected ways.

 
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