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Turning Japanese: "The Mikado," at Lincoln Park through June 18 PDF Print E-mail
Theatre - Reviews
Written by Mike Schulz   
Tuesday, 13 June 2006 23:06

The Mikado This past weekend, it was rainy, gloomy, and downright cold for this time of year. Let's face it: The weather sucked.

And thinking about all the local outdoor events where attendance might have been negatively affected by the climate - Race for the Cure, the Left Bank Fine Art Fair, Gumbo Ya Ya, et cetera, et cetera - I couldn't bear to not attend Genesius Guild's and Opera@Augustana's Saturday-night performance of The Mikado. Foul weather be damned - if The Mikado's cast and orchestra were going to suffer the elements, then by God, so was I.

 
Disappointed? Yes, Siam: "The King & I," at the Clinton Area Showboat Theatre through June 18 PDF Print E-mail
Theatre - Reviews
Written by Mike Schulz   
Tuesday, 13 June 2006 23:04

Benjamin Cole and Nicole Horton When you visit the Clinton Area Showboat Theatre, you know you won't get much in the way of spectacle - the intimate stage space is charming, but limited - so, instead, you look for inventiveness, especially when the production in question generally thrives on spectacle.

 
More Than Pharoah ’Nuff: "Aida," at the Prospect Park Auditorium through June 17 PDF Print E-mail
Theatre - Reviews
Written by Mike Schulz   
Tuesday, 13 June 2006 23:00

Tyson Danner, Allyson Peniston, and Angela Cavallo More often than not, our area's musicals are graced by terrific voices. But every once in a while, a performer will come along whose vocal gifts and interpretive skills positively knock you out, causing you to silently mouth one word at your theatergoing companion: "Damn." The Quad City Music Guild's current production of the Disney musical Aida, directed by Bill Marsoun, doesn't have one of those performers. It has two.

 
Simply Mahr-velous: "Perfect Wedding," at the Richmond Hill Barn Theatre through June 11 PDF Print E-mail
Theatre - Reviews
Written by Mike Schulz   
Tuesday, 06 June 2006 23:33

Jeremy Mahr and Mackenzie Kerr Jeremy Mahr may be our area's most effortlessly relaxed performer. There isn't even a trace of actor's phoniness in his line readings or physicality; there's so little artifice in Mahr's portrayals that he can easily fool you into thinking he's not acting at all. Mahr has a beautiful hangdog expression - he looks as if he's endured continual disappointment, and is prepared to endure more - and his focus is concentrated and imploring. Yet when he smiles, the warmth that exudes from him is a little overpowering; he acts like a man embarrassed to be receiving the happiness he deserves. Mahr is a supremely empathetic performer - I've now seen him in three productions since August, and for the life of me, I can't figure out how he manages to do so much while appearing to do so little.

 

 
Old-Fashioned Entertainment with the "Modern" Touch: "Thoroughly Modern Millie" at Timber Lake PDF Print E-mail
Theatre - Reviews
Written by Mike Schulz   
Tuesday, 06 June 2006 23:30

Erin Childs and Seth LieberFrom the Quad Cities, a trip to the Timber Lake Playhouse will take roughly 80 minutes. But I was so happy to be returning to Mt. Carroll, Illinois, for its 2006 season opener, Thoroughly Modern Millie, that I don't think I stopped smiling once during the entire trek. The theatre's 2005 presentations of The Full Monty and The Hunchback of Notre Dame were, for me, two of last summer's absolute high points - both shows beautifully staged and refreshingly risky - and the venue itself, nestled in the woods, is large and inviting, with its productions boasting terrific design and costumes and a game, go-for-broke ensemble. It was a thrill to be returning after 10 months.

 

 
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