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Send in the Clowns: "The Taming of the Shrew," at Augustana College through November 4 PDF Print E-mail
Theatre - Reviews
Written by Mike Schulz   
Wednesday, 31 October 2007 10:05

Brian Bengtson and Jennifer Altenbernd in The Taming of the Shrew As luck - and the Vikings' football schedule - would have it, Augustana College's opening- weekend performances of The Taming of the Shrew coincided with the school's homecoming weekend, which allowed me the chance to reconnect with some fellow theatre-department alumni both before and after Saturday night's show. At several points during the evening, we laughed 'til we cried at stories of shared friends and past Augie productions, and it wasn't until the next day that I realized why this version of Shakespeare's comedy felt like the perfect play for my mood that night: Just like college, it was all about the joy of getting up in front of people and acting like a first-class goof.

 
Get Out Your Handkerchief: "Othello," at the Rock Island Masonic Temple through October 20 PDF Print E-mail
Theatre - Reviews
Written by Mike Schulz   
Wednesday, 17 October 2007 10:22

Julian C. Jarrell in OthelloI've seen three or four first-rate portrayals of Shakespeare's Othello over the years, and I always marvel at how both the character and the performer seem to literally grow in stature through the course of the play.

 
Williams’ Burg: "The Glass Menagerie," at the Green Room through October 21 PDF Print E-mail
Theatre - Reviews
Written by Mike Schulz   
Wednesday, 17 October 2007 10:20

Abby VanGerpen, Jackie Madunic, and Eddie Staver III in The Glass Menagerie There's no playwright, living or deceased, whose words I would rather listen to than Tennessee Williams. And if you don't already share that opinion, the first few minutes of the Green Room's The Glass Menagerie - with actor Eddie Staver III introducing us to Williams' "truth in the pleasant disguise of illusion" - might be enough to change your mind.

 
A Family at War ... with the Audience: "All My Sons," at St. Ambrose University PDF Print E-mail
Theatre - Reviews
Written by Mike Schulz   
Wednesday, 17 October 2007 10:19

Ryan Westwood and Louis Hare in All My Sons As the first act of Arthur Miller's All My Sons nears its climax, the atmosphere is thick with tension and discomfort. A young man has proposed to the former girlfriend of his older brother, presumed dead three years after World War II. The boys' mother, convinced that her child is still alive, is on the edge of a nervous breakdown. The boys' father, obviously hiding some dark secret, appears deeply nervous about an incoming phone call. And in St. Ambrose University's Saturday-night production of this American tragedy, you could tell that its Act I closer was really working, because for a few brief minutes, the audience collectively stopped coughing.

 
O.K. L.A.: "California Suite," at the Richmond Hill Barn Theatre through October 14 PDF Print E-mail
Theatre - Reviews
Written by Mike Schulz   
Wednesday, 10 October 2007 02:14

Stan Weimer and Diane Greenwood in California Suite For my money, California Suite is the ideal Neil Simon play, as it's actually composed of four independent one-act plays, giving you far less chance to grow exhausted by his characters' persistent wisecracking.

 
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