A photojournalist’s image is framed and captured, a
moment of high emotion frozen by the camera lens, a distillation of a
larger, often tragic event. Today those events, all too often, are
scenes of physical and emotional devastation in war-torn nations. In
Donald Margulies’ 2009 play, Time Stands Still,
we learn that shooting those images generates addictive adrenaline even
as it hardens the soul.
Cincinnati’s Riverfest fireworks once fired the starting gun for local theater, but already several theaters have shows onstage. This week Cincinnati’s major theaters open their first productions of 2011-2012, launching a fall offering an unusual number of award-winning shows.
Musicals are not Ensemble Theatre’s bread and butter. But after 25 years, ETC has produced enough to excerpt selections for a thoroughly entertaining evening celebrating the theater’s anniversary. Big name shows as well as the twice-presented Rock show, Hedwig and the Angry Inch, are represented along with comic gems and a healthy dose of songs from David Kisor’s holiday fairytale musicals.
Turning 25 might not seem like a big accomplishment — unless you’re doing theater in Over-the-Rhine. Ensemble Theatre of Cincinnati (ETC) is drawing its first quarter-century to a close with 25 The Musical (May 4-22), a medley of tunes representing the company’s musical offerings since 1986.
In August of last year, CityBeat’s Cincinnati Entertainment Awards (CEAs) for theater ended a run of 14 years by merging with the Acclaim Awards, a program established more recently by The Cincinnati Enquirer. As part of that merger, CityBeat offered to develop a new element that would preserve the CEA process of public voting whereby theater enthusiasts can cast ballots for onstage work they appreciate. To that end, the 2011 Acclaims will feature the newly established Cincinnati Theater Awards (CTAs) with results announced later this spring. That’s where your help is needed.
American Negro Spirituals are one of American history’s great ironies. “Swing Low, Sweet Chariot,” “Go Down, Moses” and “The Battle of Jericho” are among the world’s most beloved melodies, created in the harsh, degrading reality of slavery. We love these songs, but do we really know them?
I annually face the holidays with mixed
emotions. I love the holiday season, but I also know that it means I'll be in overdrive, attending numerous theatrical holiday productions. But there are excellent options again this holiday season, starting with Cincinnati Playhouse's 'A Christmas Carol' and ETC's 'Cinderella.'
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.