by Rick Pender
7 days ago
Posted In: Theater
at 10:32 AM | Permalink
A few end-of-summer theater choices
Theater slows down this time of year as most local
companies are readying to launch their 2015-2016 seasons in September.
You’ll find two newish productions on local stages — Company at The Carnegie in Covington and 9 to 5 at the Incline in East Price Hill. Stephen Sondheim’s Company
is a solid production with a nice turn by Zachary Huffman in the
central role of Robert. There are lots of well-performed tunes by a
young cast and some able musicians. Here’s my review. I’m not so
enthusiastic about the third show of the Incline’s inaugural season: 9 to 5 is a weak offering after the successes of The Producers and 1776.
That’s largely due to a script that’s pretty stale and silly, as I
mentioned in my review. It’s based on a 1980 movie about a chauvinistic
boss and three women who give him his comeuppance. Dolly Parton played a
feisty secretary in the movie and had a hit with its title song. When
the movie became a 2009 stage musical, she wrote the songs. They don’t
add much. Cincinnati Landmark must have pulled out all the stops for the
first two shows this summer; this one looks like they cut some corners.
These two productions continue through Aug. 30.
This is the final weekend for Hundred Days
at Know Theatre. This Rock opera has been an unqualified hit for the
18-year-old Over-the-Rhine venue. I gave it a Critic’s Pick and
I’ve talked with several friends who have gone back to see it a second
time. Abigail and Shaun Bengson sing their way through a tragic love
affair — a marriage cut short by a terminal disease — that ends up
feeling pretty joyous since they choose to celebrate their “100 days” as
if it was the 60-year marriage they had hoped for. Great concept, great
execution. Get a ticket if you can: 513-300-5669
Rick Pender’s STAGE DOOR blog appears here every Friday. Find more theater reviews and feature stories here.
0 Comments · Thursday, August 20, 2015
ambitious artistic director who opens her first full theater season with a show
by Stephen Sondheim. But Maggie Perrino has show biz in her blood — her father,
Tim Perrino, is the force behind Cincinnati Landmark Productions — so she
doesn’t do things halfway.
0 Comments · Monday, April 13, 2015
When you hear the name Steve Martin, you surely think of a
funny guy — "wild and crazy," in fact — both as an actor and a
comedian. But he's also a playwright, and you have the opportunity to
see one of his most amusing works at the Carnegie where The Underpants is onstage through April 26.
0 Comments · Tuesday, March 31, 2015
Matt Distel’s smartly curated exhibition, Now Here: Theoretical Landscapes, is a broad
sampling of more than 20 regional artists who mine personal and
universal landscapes to present hypothetical meditations on locations of
space and time.
Chefs and artists reflect the popular children’s board game at The Carnegie for 'The Art of Food'
0 Comments · Wednesday, February 18, 2015
is absolutely nothing run-of-the-mill about The Art of Food
exhibit opening Friday. The popular event is expected to attract as
many as 700 guests. And it’s safe to say that this year’s over-the-top
extravaganza with a Candy Land theme might be the zaniest ever.
'West Side Story' demands singers and dancers — but youth is essential, too
0 Comments · Monday, January 12, 2015
Despite its cramped stage, The Carnegie’s staging of the show has many elements that pay homage to the original.
0 Comments · Tuesday, August 5, 2014
It was 35 years ago when I first heard
about a new Broadway musical, the story of a Victorian serial murderer whose
victims were ground up for meat pies. My first reaction to Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street was disbelief.
by Rick Pender
Posted In: Theater
at 11:24 AM | Permalink
There are several good theater choices south of the Ohio River this weekend.The theater (and dance) program at Northern Kentucky University presents a truly varied array of programming — this season has included a play by Orson Welles, the legendary musical South Pacific, Shakespeare's As You Like It and more. The academic year's final production Monty Python's Spamalot, opened last evening, and it seems to be a perfect vehicle for a lot of onstage clowning. (In case you haven't been tuned in, the show is subtitled "A musical lovingly ripped off from the motion picture Monty Python and the Holy Grail," and many of the show's most hilarious moments are reproduced wholesale onstage.) But clowning can be serious work, and if you catch NKU's production, pay attention to the choreography (the work of NKU grad Roderick Justice) which is complex, amusing and very well executed by the cast of 25. Director Ken Jones keeps things moving; the actors get into the tomfoolery from start to finish, especially Kat Moser as the diva who's the Lady of the Lake and Bradley Goren as long-suffering Patsy (he's the one who clicks the coconut shells to simulate King Arthur riding on horseback, among other amusing moments). The show is a fine entertainment, if you're a fan of the low but articulate humor of the Python troupe. Through April 27. Tickets ($8-$14): 859-572-5464.Comedy of an entirely different sort is available at another Kentucky venue, the Carnegie in Covington, where Mary Chase's 1945 Pulitzer Prize winner Harvey is available through April 27. This is a piece of gentle humor from the past, about a slightly off-kilter guy who sees a six-foot-plus rabbit — he calls it a "pooka" — named Harvey, much to the dismay of several family members who are embarrassed by his behavior. Their efforts to get him committed to a local asylum go awry to much merriment and a message about being, well, gentle and sweet. This is good, old-fashioned fun. Tickets: 859-957-1940.If you prefer a well-written contemporary drama, this weekend is your last chance to see A Delicate Ship at the Cincinnati Playhouse. Anna Ziegler's new show (this is its world premiere) is a memory play that explores an unexpected chain of events triggered by a love triangle. It's beautifully staged by Michael Evan Haney with a cast of three actors who are just right for each of their roles. I gave this one a Critic's Pick when it opened; it's as good as anything I saw recently at the much-respected Humana Festival of New American Plays at Actors Theatre of Louisville. Tickets ($30-$80): 513-421-3888.
0 Comments · Wednesday, April 16, 2014
You won’t find cutting-edge material
onstage at the Carnegie. The theater’s managing director Joshua Steele
has mastered two elements: He collaborates with a wide array of local
theater artists and companies, and he produces works that are, by and
large, familiar fare.
0 Comments · Monday, December 23, 2013
How was 2013 as a year for plays and
musicals in Cincinnati? From where I stand — or sit, since I’m most
often in a seat at one of our local theaters — it stacked up pretty