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Bumble, Fumble, Toil, and Tumble: "Noises Off," at St. Ambrose University through April 17 PDF Print E-mail
Theatre - Reviews
Written by Dee Canfield   
Thursday, 14 April 2016 10:11

Jackson Green, Jordan Webster-Moore, and  Becca Brazel in Noises OffMichael Frayn’s 1982 comedy Noises Off, which will be performed by the St. Ambrose theatre department this weekend, is a fast-paced, riotously wacky farce full of witty lines and tremendous physical comedy, and I can’t believe that, prior to Tuesday night’s rehearsal, I had never seen it before. This has, indeed, been my loss.

Tastes Like Teen Spirit: "Amy's Wish," at the Richmond Hill Barn Theatre through April 17 PDF Print E-mail
Theatre - Reviews
Written by Victoria Navarro   
Monday, 11 April 2016 06:00

Taylor McKean in Amy's WishOne of the great things about living in the Quad Cities area is that there is a variety of theatre to suit almost everyone’s taste. At one end of the spectrum are theatre companies that mostly offer edgy, thought-provoking material, and at the other are venues that generally deliver more lighthearted, uncomplicated fare – plays such as the Richmond Hill Barn Theatre's romantic comedy Amy’s Wish, whose opening-night performance on April 7 was a true crowd-pleaser.

Long Night's Journey into Day: "Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?" at the District Theatre through April 16 PDF Print E-mail
Theatre - Reviews
Written by Victoria Navarro   
Monday, 04 April 2016 06:00

Patti Flaherty, Jonathan Grafft, James Driscoll, and Jenny Winn in Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?Let's say you're a young, male biology professor who has landed a job at a small New England college. After a faculty party and lots of drinking, you and your wife are invited for a nightcap at the home of a middle-aged history professor whose sexually charged spouse happens to be the college president's daughter. It's 2 a.m., the liquor keeps coming, and your hosts start to argue. Do you stay? Of course you do. What could go wrong?!

This is the setup for Pulitzer Prize-winner Edward Albee's Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, the latest offering at the District Theatre. And after attending the April 1 performance, I have a newfound reverence for Albee’s words as performed by its four actors. The play, which mixes emotions, reality, and symbolism into a thought-provoking commentary on the society and values of its time, has to be truly understood by the actors and director for the performance to work. Happily, director/set designer Tristan Layne Tapscott and company provided a visceral theatre experience that was intimate, revealing, shocking, at times uncomfortable … and pretty darned amazing.

Live from New York, It's Sober-Day Night! : "My Favorite Year," at the Prospect Park Auditorium through April 3 PDF Print E-mail
Theatre - Reviews
Written by Dee Canfield   
Thursday, 31 March 2016 06:00

Tom Naab, Margie Martel, and Ian Sodawasser in My Favorite YearIf you are of a certain age, you will happily recall the golden days of live television. And whether you can remember those days or not, you will have the opportunity, through Quad City Music Guild’s production of My Favorite Year, to go back in time to the year 1954, and experience the trials and tribulations of producing a weekly segment of a fictional TV show titled King Kaiser’s Comedy Hour.

Die Job: "Shear Madness," at the Circa '21 Dinner Playhouse through April 30 PDF Print E-mail
Theatre - Reviews
Written by Jeff Ashcraft   
Tuesday, 15 March 2016 06:00

Jennifer Poarch, Brad Hauskins, Tristan Layne Tapscott, Jeff Haffner, Carrie SaLoutos, and Tom Walljasper in Shear MadnessOur audience hadn't even realized the play had started.

The continually in-motion and always entertaining Bootleggers had barely concluded their pre-show when the evening's featured performance quietly began. As patrons sipped their after-dinner coffees, and with the house lights fully lit, the first characters in the Circa '21 Dinner Playhouse's production of Shear Madness made their way onstage and – delivering an outlandish and amusing show-before-the-show – gave our crowd some insight into what sort of over-the-top, wacky comedy we were about to see. Between cast members getting their hair washed and blow-dried in rhythm to classic pop music to the infinite number of entrances and exits, it was clear that this was going to be one wild and colorful ride.

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