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No Holds Bard: "The Taming of the Shrew," at the Rock Island Masonic Temple through March 16 PDF Print E-mail
Theatre - Reviews
Written by Mike Schulz   
Wednesday, 12 March 2008 02:40

Chris Moore and Beth Woolley

The way I see it, the only real problem with the Prenzie Players (and it's more a problem for me than them) is that their performance standard is so consistently high that when they produce a show that satisfies even beyond that standard, you don't quite know how to describe it. Regarding the theatrical troupe's current production of The Taming of the Shrew, then, let me just state that it's the best time I've had at an area show in all of 2008. And, quite possibly, in all of 2007. And 2006. The invention and commitment and laugh-'til-you-cry hilarity of director Jeremy Mahr's presentation is truly staggering; it transports you to a state of complete happiness that you don't ever want to return from.

 
Wife Swap: "Anybody for Murder?," at the Playcrafters Barn Theatre through March 16 PDF Print E-mail
Theatre - Reviews
Written by Mike Schulz   
Wednesday, 12 March 2008 02:38

Christopher Tracy, Jean Lupoli, and Pamela Crouch

In the Playcrafters Barn Theatre's current production of Anybody for Murder?, Christopher Tracy plays Max Harrington, a seemingly mild-mannered gentleman who, through the course of the play, will attempt to murder his wife, convince his girlfriend to assume her identity, attempt to murder his girlfriend, drug potential witnesses, and lie to everyone he comes in contact with. Yet while Max may be a monster, it's pretty apparent that Tracy himself is just about the best friend a moderately funny comedic thriller could ask for.

 
Cassioblanca: "Richard Blaine, the Merchant of Morocco," at Scott Community College through March 16 PDF Print E-mail
Theatre - Reviews
Written by Mike Schulz   
Wednesday, 12 March 2008 02:37

Chris Wadsager and Daniel Schaub

In November, I had the chance to see Scott Community College's presentation of The Complete Works of William Shakespeare [abridged], and the production, like the play itself, was a hit-and-miss spoof on the Bard's entire output. Not all of the jokes - nor all of the performances - were at peak freshness, but it was still an agreeably goofball entertainment that showcased a number of promising actors, and so I had every reason to expect the same from the school's current offering, Richard Blaine, the Merchant of Morocco, as its subtitle is a pretty fair précis for the show as a whole: Or, If Shakespeare Had Written Casablanca.

 
Appellations of Predilection: "Eleemosynary," at the Green Room PDF Print E-mail
Theatre - Reviews
Written by Mike Schulz   
Wednesday, 27 February 2008 02:19

Susan McPeters, Angela Elliott, and Abby VanGerpen in Eleemosynary Before praising the Green Room's lovely, charming production of Eleemosynary - the Lee Blessing comedy/drama that ran February 22 through 24 - I feel compelled to also praise the show's Friday-night audience. Actually, I feel compelled to praise the audiences at each of the productions I've attended in this Rock Island space; for fellow theatre devotees who tend to grow hostile near patrons who routinely cough, shift in their seats, slowly open cellophane-wrapped candies, and forget to turn off their cell phones, the Green Room is easily the area's venue of choice.

 
Flop Flipped: "Light Up the Sky," at the Richmond Hill Barn Theatre through February 24 PDF Print E-mail
Theatre - Reviews
Written by Mike Schulz   
Wednesday, 20 February 2008 02:43

Susan Philhower, Renaud Haymon, and Jan Golz Truth be told, I'm rather envious of the audiences who'll be seeing Light Up the Sky during its second weekend at the Richmond Hill Barn Theatre, because while I had a mostly terrific time at Friday night's production, I'm guessing that subsequent crowds will have an even better one.

 
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