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To the Manners Born: "Miss Abigail's Guide to Dating, Mating, & Marriage," at the Circa '21 Dinner Playhouse through March 23 PDF Print E-mail
Theatre - Reviews
Written by Thom White   
Monday, 17 March 2014 06:00

Jonathan Iglesias and Kateri Demartino in Miss Abigail's Guide to Dating, Mating, & MarriageWednesday evening’s audience clearly had a lot of fun watching and interacting with the Circa '21 Dinner Playhouse’s Miss Abigail’s Guide to Dating, Mating, & Marriage. In truth, the performance would not have been quite as much fun if there were more watching and less interacting.  While there are plenty of laughs to be had as the titular character in this PG-13-style comedy offers advice on flirting, relationships, and sex, there are also a few missteps made along the way.

 
WWJD?: "Next Fall," at the Village Theatre through February 2 PDF Print E-mail
Theatre - Reviews
Written by Thom White   
Monday, 27 January 2014 06:00

David Turley and Creighton D. Olsen in Next FallA year-and-a-half after enjoying his performance in New Ground Theatre’s The Beauty Queen of Leenane, I am glad to see David Turley on a Quad Cities stage again in the company's Next Fall. It was Turley's portrayals of John Hinckley in the Green Room Theatre’s 2008 Assassins and William Barfee in the Harrison Hilltop Theatre’s 2010 The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee that initially endeared me to his comedic deliveries. And I’m grateful to see him employ his skills as this new play's 40-year-old gay atheist Adam, a character performed with more subtlety than those aforementioned roles, but one that still employs Turley's amusing brand of dry, sarcastic, slightly dark humor.

 
Take a Walk on the Wilder Side: "Our Town," at the District Theatre through February 9 PDF Print E-mail
Theatre - Reviews
Written by Thom White   
Monday, 27 January 2014 06:00

Shelley Walljasper in Our TownDirector Bryan Tank’s production of Our Town fits the District Theatre’s stage like a glove. Or rather, I should say Tank uses the stage so well – especially in his placement of actors and set pieces – that this play seems a perfect fit for the space. With its beautiful employment of backlighting (particularly when we first see the characters grouped together) and set designer/co-star Chris Causer’s large, white pieces of fabric stretched over and draped across the back wall of the stage – and covering set pieces until they're being used – this production, aesthetically speaking, is breathtaking in its simplicity.

 
Oh Boy: "Buddy: The Buddy Holly Story," at the Circa '21 Dinner Playhouse through March 8 PDF Print E-mail
Theatre - Reviews
Written by Thom White   
Monday, 20 January 2014 06:00

James Fairchild, Dalen Gunn, and Collin O'Connor in Buddy: The Buddy Holly StoryFriday’s performance of Buddy: The Buddy Holly Story at the Circa '21 Dinner Playhouse left me wanting more – specifically, more of Kiarri Andrews’ and Nina Waters’ Apollo singers and Collin O’Connor’s Ritchie Valens. Andrews and Waters brought some much-needed energy to the first act, adding attention-worthy moxie and a whole lot of fun to their one scene. (Waters' character also sparkles, literally, with the help of costume designer Gregory Hiatt’s gorgeous pink column gown with watteau train.) Meanwhile, O’Connor, with his suave demeanor and smooth pelvic gyrations, whet my appetite for a Ritchie Valens musical, if for no other reason than to see the actor enjoy more stage moments as the singer.

 
Life Is No Cabaret, Old Chum: "My Sister," at the QC Theatre Workshop through January 25 PDF Print E-mail
Theatre - Reviews
Written by Thom White   
Monday, 20 January 2014 06:00

Elizabeth and Emily Hinckler in My SisterWhen a play stirs emotions in a way that invites a change in one's perspectives on life or the world, that’s true theatre magic. Such is the case with the QC Theatre Workshop’s My Sister, which, after it ended, left me wanting to just be quiet and alone for a while, in order to digest what I’d observed and learned during Saturday’s performance.

 
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