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Sibling Revelry: "Catfish Moon," at the Playcrafters Barn Theatre through March 18 PDF Print E-mail
Reviews
Written by Mike Schulz   
Wednesday, 14 March 2007 02:31

624_catfish_moon_review1.jpgIn his recent roles at the Playcrafters Barn Theatre, Patrick Adamson - portraying the insistent houseguest from hell in 2005's The Nerd and the irresponsible, romantic Gordon in the current Catfish Moon - has displayed an almost fearsome amount of talent.

 
Throne for a Loop: "King Henry the Fourth," at the Rock Island Masonic Temple through March 4 PDF Print E-mail
Reviews
Written by Mike Schulz   
Wednesday, 28 February 2007 02:23

Jeff DeLeon and Jeremy Mahr in King Henry the Fourth, the Prenzie Players' second presentation in their Henriad trilogy, opened on Friday, and let me preface by admitting that I have a tougher time composing reviews for this troupe's productions than for any other area organization. When faced, in show after show, with such imagination and daring and passion, where does one start?

 
Twisted Sisters: "Arsenic & Old Lace," at the Richmond Hill Barn Theatre through February 25 PDF Print E-mail
Reviews
Written by Mike Schulz   
Wednesday, 21 February 2007 02:26

Kevin DeDecker, Dan Faust, and Tom Morrow in When the Richmond Hill Barn Theatre's current production of Arsenic & Old Lace is really rolling, this venerated black comedy (well, dark-gray comedy) is absolutely delightful. The problem, though - or rather, the problem with last week's opening-night performance - is that Richmond Hill's production doesn't so much roll as lurch; despite their frequently endearing characterizations, the actors on Thursday evening had so much trouble getting their words out that the show never quite found a satisfying rhythm. The experience was like taking a vacation road trip in a vehicle that keeps threatening to stall: You've made it to your destination, and you've had a good time along the way, but you're still a little grateful when it's over.

 
A Hit, a Very Palpable Hit: "Fortinbras," at St. Ambrose University PDF Print E-mail
Reviews
Written by Mike Schulz   
Wednesday, 21 February 2007 02:24

Jessica Stratton and Andrew Harvey in St. Ambrose University's Fortinbras was the most thoroughly entertaining theatrical production I've yet seen in 2007. And while, if you missed the show during its one-weekend, three-performance run, I have no interest in rubbing your noses in that fact, I feel the need to write about the experience because I hope that soon (a) you see Fortinbras and (b) you see this production's actors.

 
Capital Execution: "Dead Man Walking" at Augustana College through February 11 PDF Print E-mail
Reviews
Written by Mike Schulz   
Wednesday, 07 February 2007 02:48

Kyle Roggenbuck and Brian Bengtson in With Tim Robbins' capital-punishment drama Dead Man Walking, Augustana College's theatre department has crafted a moving and impressive play, and I can't fully express how difficult that task must have been, because it really isn't a play; it's a screenplay. Scene for scene, sometimes even word for word, this 2002 piece replicates Robbins' 1995 movie to the letter, and in doing so, points out the deep chasm that exists between theatre and film. As a stage piece, Dead Man Walking shouldn't work, but director Jeff Coussens and his fiercely committed cast do everything in their power to keep you from noticing, and more often than not, succeed beautifully.

 
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