Brains trump beauty in 'Cinderella,' now playing at Ensemble Theatre of Cincinnati, where every December another familiar fairy tale gets a fun musical makeover. This year's installment features a philosophy-loving heroine (exceptional homegrown talent Brooke Rucidlo) in local playwright Joe McDonough's clever script.
New Edgecliff Theatre, which has done well in two previous seasons reviving classic works, launches its 13th season with 'The Night of the Iguana,' sometimes called Williams' "last great work," with two local professionals in its leading female roles (Kate Wilford and Annie Fitzpatrick). NET has given it a strong visual production (designed by Melissa Bennett), set in a seedy Mexican hotel.
For several summers, Cincinnati Shakespeare Company has offered shows of witty, classical fluff when most companies are on a seasonal break. This month Noel Coward's comedic ghost story 'Blithe Spirit' fills the bill nicely, featuring six CSC veteran performers as well as Annie Fitzpatrick, who provides a great dollop of loony frosting on a very tasty summer dessert.
Imagine one of René Magritte's paintings brought to fulminous, razzle-dazzle life. That's Sarah Ruhl's highly, wryly comic new play, 'Dead Man’s Cell Phone.' Ensemble Theatre of Cincinnati offers this regional premiere in a well conceived but mostly impenetrable production directed by Michael Evan Haney and brilliantly designed by Brian c. Mehring.
Staff positions have taken the biggest hit as Cincinnati's arts and cultural institutions hunker down to survive the recession. Some organizations have adapted through deliberate attrition, while other belt-tightening measures have included shorter hours and curtailed programming. "It's a painful time," says Raphaela Platow, director of the Contemporary Arts Center. The bright side (surprisingly, there is one) is that attendance is up for many organizations.