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Freud's Last Session (Review)

A whole lotta talking

0 Comments · Thursday, January 24, 2013
It’s Sept. 3, 1939. The father of psychoanalysis, Dr. Sigmund Freud, has invited to his London flat a young scholar of literature and theology from Oxford, C. S. Lewis.   
by Rick Pender 01.18.2013
Posted In: Arts community, Visual Art, Theater at 09:11 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
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Stage Door: Options Abound

An avalanche of theater heads our way next week — including the touring Broadway musical Memphis (not Million Dollar Quartet, as mistakenly published in last Sunday's Enquirer), the regional premiere of Freud's Last Session at Ensemble Theatre Cincinnati (not "Freud's Last Stand" as the same Enquirer piece labeled it — doesn't our daily paper employ copy editors and fact checkers?), the world premiere of Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa's Abigail/1702 (in previews this weekend; read more here) and a concert staging of Lerner & Loewe's lovely musical Camelot at the Carnegie Center in Covington (with accompaniment by Mischa Santora and members of the Cincinnati Chamber Orchestra).  By the way, there's apparently such anticipation for Freud's Last Session, which features local actor Bruce Cromer, that tickets are selling out for some performances. As a result, even before the show opens on Jan. 23, ETC has extended the show's run by a week, to Feb. 16. Box office: 513-421-3555 If you haven't yet caught Cincinnati Shakespeare Company's staging of Richard II, you really should make a point of doing so. In my review, I pointed to Brent Vimtrup's multi-faceted performance. I'll add here that there are strong supporting performances from Jim Hopkins, Nick Rose and Giles Davies (this longtime CSC favorite is back in town for a few productions). This show isn't often produced (it's the first time for Cincy Shakes in its 19-year history), but this staging will make you wonder why. It's bursting with poetry, and there's lots to look at with beautiful 14th-century-styled costumes. An Acclaim Awards panel cited Vimtrup's performance as well as Andrew Hungerford's lighting design; I gave the production a Critic's Pick. Need any more encouragement? Tickets: 513-381-2273, x1 Elsewhere, you'll find a production of Adam Rapp's Red Light Winter by Untethered Theater at Clifton Performance Theatre. This is a chilly drama about a weird love triangle. It's a great piece for three young actors. Look for a review in the next issue of CityBeat. (Tickets: 513-939-0599) If you want something a little lighter, consider Moonlight and Magnolias at Mariemont Players, a very dependable community theater on Cincinnati's east side. The show is an amusing reconstruction of the behind-the-scenes shenanigans involved in writing the script for Gone with the Wind. It's told with a lot of slapstick that will have audiences laughing out loud. (513-684-1236)
 
 

Making Merry, Theatrically

0 Comments · Wednesday, December 5, 2012
It’s time for mistletoe and holly, when theaters entice folks in search of holiday cheer (and occasional parodies thereof) to celebrate the season. Many theaters need December ticket revenues to present shows onstage for the rest of the year.  

Cromer Is a Man for All Theater Seasons

0 Comments · Wednesday, September 12, 2012
What makes Bruce Cromer one of our region’s best actors? He’s especially good at virtuous characters such as Atticus Finch, the admirable, broadminded attorney in To Kill a Mockingbird, a role he’s currently playing for Cincinnati Shakespeare Company (CSC).  

To Kill a Mockingbird (Review)

Hope springs eternal in CSC staging of Harper Lee's evergreen tale

0 Comments · Wednesday, September 12, 2012
Mockingbird is about the importance of tolerance and understanding, something not achieved in these circumstances but that seems possible eventually. Those sparks of hope have made this a meaningful tale for a half-century, and CSC has brought the story to life.  

Star Gazing

0 Comments · Wednesday, August 15, 2012
If you spent some of last spring watching the TV series Smash, you learned that Broadway producers look for talent whose names attract audiences. The commercial concerns of Broadway producers are surely a big factor in their decision-making, especially how much magnetism a star can bring. This led me to speculate whether we have bankable stars in Cincinnati.  

Connections and Disruptions

0 Comments · Tuesday, February 14, 2012
When I read Andrew Bovell’s play Speaking in Tongues, the current Shelterhouse production at the Cincinnati Playhouse (through March 4), I have to admit I was mystified as to what it would become on the stage.   

Much Ado About Nothing (Review)

More than love is needed in Cincy Shakes' season-opener

0 Comments · Tuesday, September 7, 2010
There are two unlikely pairings in Cincinnati Shakespeare's 1960s-flavored 'Much Ado About Nothing.' First is the romance between Beatrice and Benedick, competing wits whose friends trick them into realizing they're perfect for each other. Still more audacious is director Drew Fracher's attempt to marry this well-mannered comedy with the acid-tinged, free-love vibe of a hippie commune.  

The Lion in Winter (Review)

Manic production mars Cincy Shakespeare's season opening production

0 Comments · Monday, September 14, 2009
Imagine the result if Noel Coward had written 'King Lear.' Imagine the savagery that families reserve for their most bitter internecine battles but verbalized in the lilting, wit-lit language of drawing-room comedy. That's the effect of 'The Lion in Winter,' which is opening Season 16 at Cincinnati Shakespeare Company with seven most familiar and ordinarily persuasive performers directed by artistic guru Brian Isaac Phillips.   

A Little Night Music (Review)

New Stage Collective goes out with a stylish bang

0 Comments · Friday, May 1, 2009
So it's "hail and farewell" to Alan Patrick Kenny and New Stage Collective. With eight performances of Stephen Sondheim's and Hugh Wheeler's 'A Little Night Music' (presented at Know Theater), NSC completes its seventh and final season of always ambitious, often audacious playmaking.  

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