Noël: the Songs and Letters of Noël Coward
KT Sullivan is a smash in “Love, Noël: the Songs
and Letters of Noël Coward," written by Barry Day
and directed by Charlotte Moore, at W. Scott McLucas Studio
Theatre, 32 West 22nd Street. Reviewed by Lucy Komisar and Edward
Cole brightens Dad’s “Freddy Cole Quartet”
July 13 there was blackout in New York City, Freddy Cole didn’t
make it to his 8:30 set at Birdland last night. He was stuck
in a nearby hotel when the power outage struck and, at 87, he
couldn’t take the stairs. His son Lionel Cole took over,
playing the piano, singing and charming the crowd with his voice,
his personality and his kilts. It was a glorious evening at
Legendary Jazz Club after all. By Lucy Komisar.
By the Year, 1943, 1951
For 19 years, impresario Scott Siegel has been delving into
the past of American musicals to put before theater and cabaret
fans the best known and hidden gems of the decades. And also
presenting some of the finest performers to them. He picks a
couple of years. The years 1943 and 1951 in this show were typically
marked by blockbusters and some shows Lucy Komisar never knew.
Convention 2018 hits very good notes with "The Best of
is not just about the words and the music, it's about telling
a story. Sometimes, it's even a mini-musical play. And that
is what is good about the Cabaret Convention, in its 29th year,
annually four nights in October, at Rose Hall at Jazz at Lincoln
Center. The singers and audience are almost a community, many
returning for years, meeting and chatting in the expansive lobby
at intermission and after the show. By Lucy Komisar.
Glick in "Teach Me Tonight"
Veteran cabaret performer Linda Glick appeared at Pangea in
a series of four performances entitled "Teach me Tonight,"
splendidly accompanied by pianist Ian Herman. A former language
teacher of French and Spanish, the charming and likeable Glick
wove some songs together with the theme of teaching, making
for some interesting choices and very entertaining personal
stories. Good music, stories, accompaniment, and a warm feeling
between performer and audience made for a most pleasant experience.
By Paul Berss.
Convention 2017 at Lincoln Center
The Cabaret Convention put on by the Mabel Mercer Foundation
has for almost three decades brought together some of the best
cabaret performers in the country, each of four days presenting
as many as 20 singers, some prominent, some new, some doing
standards, others jazz, to keep the tradition alive. One night
this year featured the works of George Gershwin, which is why
you'll note many singers doing his songs. A nice part about
the event is that the performers come out to the lobby at intermission
and after the show to chat and schmooz with the audience. Hence
these photos. Dozens appeared over four evenings; these are
just my highlights of three nights I attended. I notice that
most are women. Well, so be it! They had the most pizzazz, the
most drama. By Lucy Komisar.
Capetta sings Dean Martin
Remy.S attended Francesca Capetta's program of songs of Dean
Martin at Carnegie Hall and thinks he was in the presence of
a star. Not Martin, because although it was his 100th birthday,
he didn't live that long. But Capetta, who he thinks is somebody
you should keep in your radar.
Trudeau channels Chavela Vargas
"Chavela: Think Of Me," written and performed by Stephanie
Trudeau, is more than just a musical cabaret based on the songs
of legendary Mexican singer Chavela Vargas. It is also a documentary
theater project that traces the famed ranchera singer's artistic
evolution and the key relationships of her life. Trudeau unveiled
the piece May 15 at Pangea Supper Club, 178 Second Ave. It was
a pleasure from start to finish! By Paul Berss.
Arias Is With You Now
sensationalist Joey Arias is an avid experimentalist both off
stage and off.. By Edward Rubin.
The best of New York’s
cabaret singers, new talents and veteran stars are featured
at the festival. By Lucy Komisar.
& Billie Holiday
In a velvet ankle-length gown,
white gloves and white fur stole, the signature gardenia over
one ear, Bonita Brisker glitters like the rhinestones on her
costume. “What a little moonlight will do…”
she channels Billie Holiday, her songs, her life. By Lucy Komisar
Las Vegas,' a celebration of the great performers"
Bobby Nesbitt’s tribute to the cabaret greats of Las Vegas
is much richer than any medley of songs from the star singers
of the time. His performance at the Tennessee Williams Theatre
reprises the iconic tunes of Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Sammy
Davis Jr. and more. But he also offers some social history that
sets "the Rat Pack"– the name given by actress
Lauren Bacall –in an American context. (She said, "You
look like a goddam rat pack."). Reviewed by Lucy Komisar.
is Kind," a sophisticated "kids' song" cabaret
Julie Reyburn mixes kids songs and sophistication at Metropolitan
Rooma. When she sings, you think you are at a theater stage.
Her rich soprano last night entranced an audience at her “Fate
is Kind,” a show of mostly kids’ songs for adults.
By Lucy Komisar.
Schmidt's "Forgotten Lovers" are characters in a comic-dramatic
A lot of Nathalie Schmidt's talent is confirmed in the cabaret
show, "Forgotten Lovers," at the Metropolitan Room.
Her acting enriches a partly comic, partly cynical take on life.
She's a personality that the New York cabaret scene needs. By
Charlotte Patton in "Celebrating Men."
Charlotte Patton's "Celebrating Men" impeccable collection
of upbeat songs about love. By Lucy Kominsar.
A rich theatrical experience, where cabaret becomes Theater.
"Sting*chronicity"— songs by Sting, played by
Rosemary Loar, who is a major cabaret singer, throaty, breathy,
with drama in her strong torch-song voice. By Lucy Komisar.
and Chown, Back in Town”
January 10 to the 13 the rick, luscious voice of Miriam Pico
and the fine jazz piano of David Chown fill the living room
of the Harry Truman Little White House, in Key West, where the
33rd president took winter vacations, playing poker with his
buddies. By Lucy Komisar.
Day at Emerson's Bar & Grill" is a stunning jazz cabaret
by Audra McDonald
a white gown, an iconic white gardenia in her hair, Audra McDonald
channels Billie Holiday — her voice, her accent, her manner
— till you believe you are sitting in the slightly tacky
Philadelphia dive where Holiday sang her last songs. By Lucy
The wonderfully intimate, 80-seat, Laurie Beecham Theatre, situated
across from Theatre Row, and a few blocks west of Broadway,
presents "BenDeLaCreme," an extravagant show which
celebrates artifice and fantaisie. "BenDeLaCreme"
is a subtle combination between performing and visual arts with
a love of spectacle and glamour. By Edward Rubin.
Lee Sanders is fanciful and moody at Pescatore cabaret"
Cabaret singer/song-writer Bonnie Lee Sanders is fanciful
and moody. She begins rather optimistically at the second-floor
cabaret at Pescatore on Second Avenue singing "Spring is
Here," but then moves into musical angst, of loves that
Second Time Around"
The first time around, Karen Wyman was a 16-year-old Bronx belting
sensational who sparked viewers of TV's "The Dean Martin
Show" to sit up and take notice. This young performer demanded
attention and she got it in on "The Ed Sullivan Show,"
"The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson," and just
about every other variety show on television and in 1969, variety
shows were the key to success. Nightclubs and recordings followed
and Karen Wyman was looking at stardom.
the Clouds Away"
got rhythm, you got music, you got your men - who could ask
for anything more? it was all there at Lyrics and Lyricists'
second show of the season at the 92nd Street Y. By Elizabeth
in a Barbour Shop
"It's the Most Wonderful Time of the Year" -- the
1963 holiday favorite, could not have rung more true. You usually
hear the captivating richness of Broadway baritone, James Barbour,
on the Broadway stage, acclaimed in major musicals like his
portrayal of Sidney Carton in the short-lived, "A Tale
of Two Cities." Catching him upfront and personal in the
intimacy of a cabaret room, however, brings special rewards.
James Barbour deivered them in his "Sixth Annual Holiday
Concert: A Broadway Tradition" at 54 Below, 254 West 54
Street. By Elizabeth Ahlfors.
Smooth Texas Blend
This eclectic trio never cut a record. They only performed together
for a few years but in those years, they were hot. Sharon Montgomery,
Sally Mayes and Billy Stritch created "Montgomery, Mayes
and Stritch". This was one of those nights to remember.By
Rene Scott and a well-done "Piece of Meat"
Sherie Rene Scott takes us on a journey that I suspect will
never end, her passionate search for understanding, love and
joy in the energy of the universe. In her cabaret show, “Piece
of Meat” at 54 Below, Scott is a sexy and energetic performer
just as she was in her Tony nominated Broadway show, “Everyday
Rapture.” By Elizabeth Ahlfors.
of Broadway comes to the cabaret
winner Faith Prince stars in a rare cabaret show directed by
Dan Foster, proving that a star used to a big stage can still
connect with a more intimate audience. By Elizabeth Ahlfors.
Party Time at the Carlyle
John Pizzarelli brings his quartet and his father, Bucky Pizzarelli, to the Cafe Carlyle. The two Pizzarelli virtuosos
share the stage and give-and-take with a mutual admiration and
intimacy that envelops the music. By Elizabeth Ahlfors.
Early Night for 11 O'Clock
a special one-night only performance, producer Scott Siegel
has brought together on stage Carole J. Bufford, Scott Coulter
and Christina Bianco to present "11 O'Clock Numbers at
7 O'Clock" at Birdland. By Elizabeth Ahlfors.
Patricia Racette is not opera’s first world-class soprano
to share her down-to-earth side in an intimate cabaret. She
is, however, one of the few who is a natural. In her show at
54 Below, “Diva on Detour, ” Racette demonstrated
a sharp acting talent and a flair for comedy. With her well-tempered
chest voice, this star of opera houses like the Metropolitan
Opera and La Scala chose some of the American songbooks’
favorite standards and some of the most heart-wrenching ballads
and embraced them in true cabaret diva passion. By Elizabeth
Get Busy" with Tanya Holt
In the words of a 1918 song, “There are smiles that make
us happy, ” andd now there is Tanya Holt with a smile that
radiates and a voice that shines. Her one-night only show, “Forever
Home, ” at the Iridum, was an offering of romance, sass, jazz, pop delivered with the joyful love of entertaining. With
a smoky voice and a vocal belt that’s a satisfying burst
of clarity, Holt made the evening an appealing commitment between
her eclectic song deliveries and her audience. By Elizabeth
A-Maz-ing Marilyn Maye is Back and 54 Below's Got Her
Conductor Peter Nero stated, "She sets the standard for
the way any pop, jazz or big band singer would like to sound."
That still holds true. At almost 85, the irrepressible Marilyn
Maye remains as good as it gets. As Johnny Carson commented
on The Tonight Show, "And that, young singers - is the
way it’s done." By Elizabeth Ahlfors.
Nepotism Needed with Adam Guettel at 54 Below
The son of Mary Rodgers ("Once Upon a Mattress") and
grandson of Richard Rodgers (composing partner to Lorenz Hart
and Oscar Hammerstein II), Adam Guettel has developed a singular
music sound of his own. While handsome enough to star in one
of his own musicals and an expressive singer as well, Guettel
invited Stephen DiPasquale and Whitney Bashore, two exquisite
performers to join him in a 90-minute show at 54 Below. By Elizabeth
with Edward Hibbert
Edward Hibbert, familiar to many as "Gil Chesterton, "
gourmet critic on the TV series, "Frasier, " does not
bound onto the cabaret stage, rarin’ to go. Stylishly, he sails through the audience, head high, back straight, and
slight smile, and places himself before the microphone. Slowly
his smile expands to a mischievous grin and, with utmost Noel
Coward élan, performs "Why Must the Show Go On?"
And so begins his one-man show, "Can’t Something
Be Done?: An Evening with Edward Hibbert!, " the show where, he says, "I popped my cabaret cherry." A program of
clever anecdotes punctuated with songs by Cole Porter, Noel
Coward, Cy Coleman and more, whimsically traces his journey
from theater to television and now intimate cabaret at 54 Below.
By Elizabeth Ahlfors.
Lloyd at the Café Carlyle
It was memory
time at the Café Carlyle, remembering as John Lloyd Young’s
confident tenor and strikingly clear falsetto hit the money
notes in the ‘50’s and ‘60’s oldies.
The cabaret show, however, was not about the Four Seasons songbook.
Its focus was to introduce Young’s new CD, "My Turn."
By Elizabeth Ahlfors.
Pixie in Gold Lame"
Ya gotta say, Tovah Feldshuh is an entire vaudeville show wrapped
up as one sprightly imp. She makes her “under Broadway
debut” at 54 Below, singing, telling stories, cracking
jokes and sharing memories. She is a zesty, zany powerhouse
who scampers onto the stage and never rests. When she sits, it is to morph into one of her characters, like the old man
in the park trying to stay positive and treasuring his memories, or evoking the image of her Grandma Ada who urged her to persevere
even when young Tovah wanted to be an actor. “Reach for
the stars and you may get to the roof, “ she told Tovah.
“If you reach for the roof you may never get off the ground.”
By Elizabeth Ahlfors.
McBroom's "A Valentine Rose" at the Cafe Carlyle
“A Valentine Rose” is not kid stuff. It’s
“romance, adult style” for singer, songwriter, actor
Amanda McBroom’s debut at the Café Carlyle, bringing
a zesty lineup of music delivered with perception and humor
(“I feel like I’m in Rhonda Fleming’s living
room!”) McBroom, a stylish, outgoing, upbeat performer,
chooses some of the best from standard songwriters like Dorothy
Fields, Sammy Cahn and Jacques Brel. She also adds numerous
original songs that reach out and touch love’s various
facets. By Elizabeth Ahlfors.
Federal Theatre's 2020 Poetry Jam
Woodie King, Jr.'s New Federal Theatre presented its "2020
Poetry Jam: She Speaks, He Speaks, We Speak, Generations Speak,"
described as a program to "honor powerful voices, from
revolutionary trailblazers to torch-bearing young artists, who
invigorate today's Black verse." I tuned in on September
21. The group of poets represented an impressive variety of
styles and themes, with an emphasis on social injustice and
tragic murders in the Black community. Most of the poems
were delivered by the eminent collection of poets themselves
in deeply felt, passionate renderings. By Paul Berss.
actress creates a newsletter for performers in quarantine
showbiz changes, so do actors' needs and the ways they get information.
Covid-19 has dealt a knockdown (but not, we trust, a knockout)
to the performing arts. So the needs of actors as individual
artists--to remain engaged, to grow artistically, to keep mind
and body together--have shifted. An admirable resource for them
is Jenna Doolittle's newly-created Actors Quarantine Newsletter,
which launched March 20, 2020 as an email to 39 people and has
gained a readership, as of this writing, of about 5,000. All
subscribers have come through the actors' grapevine.
Theater workshops "Misdemeanor Dream"
Theater's “Misdemeanor Dream” echoes vaguely Shakespeare’s
fantasy, “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” in which
shape shifting fairies, gods, rulers, boys and girls, and “rude
mechanicals” gambol through a mythical forest. However,
while “Misdemeanor Dream” is also a gambol through
a mythical landscape of no-time and all-time, the word “Misdemeanor”
in the title refers to hurtful behavior. Native experience in
encounters with the invading European (white) dominant culture
in the Americas has been mostly unjust, deadly violent, genocidal
even, but these crimes have been downgraded in the dominant
popular histories of Europeans as misdemeanors—“a
slap on the hand.” By Beate Hein Bennett.
Wind Vocal Ensemble shines in 2019 Holidays Concert
Unlike holiday music performances that offer renderings of "Jingle
Bells," "Silent Night" and "Santa Baby,"
the Western Wind presented a scholarly, dazzling display of
wide-ranging musical knowledge and impeccable taste when the
venerable organization delighted a packed house in the Church
of St. Luke in the Fields with an evening of music for the holiday
season. The wonderfully original program included Christmas
and Hanukkah songs, selections from Debussy and Poulenc to Charles
Ives, and singing in Ladino, Native American, English, Hebrew
Corrieri Literary Prize
Students of two theater training conservatories will be able
to apply for scholarship grants to study acting, playwriting
or screenwriting, thanks to a fund set up by Claudia Corrieri,
an actor/singer-songwriter, who hopes to encourage emerging
writers to grow and challenge themselves. By Muriel Hanover.
Schmidt is a French star in the Internet’s new web series
Why does an accomplished French theater and film actress want
to act in an American web series? Nathalie Schmidt stars in
“I Do,” a story set in Brooklyn about Zoe and her
screwball attempts to catch a husband. Each episode will be
about another prospective guy. By Lucy Komisar.
Stratford Festival in Ontario
The Stratford Festival in Ontario routinely employs
the talents of two theater geniuses, separated in their endeavors
by four centuries. The earlier is William Shakespeare, around
whose plays the Festival was founded 67 years ago. By Philip
Night at the Opera
Fusion Theatre's Eilin O'Dea and Bryon Singleton, accompanied
by pianist Brian Holman, certainly did not take an easy route
in their concert "A Night at the Opera." Seeing a
concert with these renowned arias up close and personal, Paul
Berss was struck by the extraordinary talent, training, courage,
and sheer athleticism called for in grand opera. By Paul Berss.
of Illumination," Alessandra Belloni, a renowned percussionist
and authority on Southern Italian traditional music, dance and
theater, had the winning idea of presenting music that celebrates
peace and healing representing three different cultures. This
was realized at Theater for the New City with the presentation
of her own I Giullari di Piazza (The Jesters of the
Square), members of the Native American SilverCloud Singers
and Dancers and African percussionist Kevin Nathaniel. The uniting
of these three cultures--Southern Italian, African, and Native
American--provided a unique and much appreciated experience
for the audience, which included Mayor de Blasio and his wife.
By Paul Berss.
Director Robert Kalfin and costume designer Gail Cooper-Hecht
reveal the secrets of a successful designer-director collaboration
in preparation for an Off-Broadway show, “The Property.”
By Anita Tenjiann
Meeting of Strategic Minds
This week at the Graham Center of Contemporary Dance, works
of London-based composer Arlene Sierra and choreographer Susan
Vencl meld, despite their geographical distance. Uniting the
two women is a similar perception of logic and the empirical
in art and the creative process. By Muriel Hanover.
Arcade's "The Girl Who Knew Too Much"
After three years of touring her one woman show, "Longing
Lasts Longer," around the world, the eminently quotable
performance artist Penny Arcade, an uncanny in your face truth-telling
Cassandra that people actually believe, is back at Joe’s
Pub at NYC’s Public Theatre.
Tallmer archives go to Columbia
The writings and archives of legendary arts journalist Jerry
Tallmer (1920-2014) have been added to the Performing Arts Collections
of the Rare Book & Manuscript Library of Columbia University's
Butler Library, 535 West 114th Street, where they join the papers
of a number of important journalists and critics, including
Harrison Salisbury, Herbert Matthews, Andrew Sarris, Judith
Crist and others.
plays for Word Holocaust Day
World Holocaust Day is January 27. Three plays which will be
performed here in New York in the next few months all do what
theatre can do: to present through individual voices individual
stories of history lived by individuals whose names never graced
the history books. Steven Spielberg’s repository of oral
history which he began in 1994 in order to capture the myriad
fates as told by Holocaust survivors may have inspired these
writers. Human history, after all, is not abstract or a statistic
but the compendium of individual lives—the individual
story is at the heart of human experience. By Beate Hein Bennett.
"An Italian Miracle" was a one-time event to exhibit
the work of Dario d'Ambrosi, Italian film maker, theater director
and founder of the movement called Teatro Patologico
(Pathological Theater), whose work with disabled persons has
caught the attention of Italian policy makers. The evening's
program was designed to give insight into the philosophy, techniques,
and effectiveness of D'Ambrosi's relatively new venture, called
"The Integrated Theatre of Emotion," a full-fledged
college program in performing arts for the mentally disabled,
which is gaining traction in Italy. By Beate Hein Bennett.
Douglas Turner Ward and Woodie King, Jr.
Two giants of the Black theater movement of the 1960's were
specially honored at a ceremony at Theatre 80 St. Marks, a small
East Village theatre that has survived gentrification. The honorees
are the two "grandfathers" of Black theaer, under
whose tutelage serious Black theatre artists, authors, directors,
designers, and actors were spawned, cultivated, and promoted
for the past fifty years. By Beate Hein Bennett.
artist Kiku Sakai dramatizes the ancient Hawaiian tale of “Pele
and Kamapua’a” with Kuruma Ningyo and Hula Ki’I
at La MaMa.
ancient Kuruma Ningyo puppetry from Japan with Hula Ki’I,
the indigenous puppet folklore of Hawaii, Japanese artist Kiku
Sakai will perform the Hawaiian tale of Pele and Kamapua’a
at La MaMa Experimental Theatre August 27, 2015 for one night
only. This workshop is a light-hearted prequel to her much-anticipated
opus, “Pele and Hi’iaka,” and demonstrates
the cultural pluralism of this unique artist.
Bikel: Lifetime achievement award and the screening of a new
Glenda Frank attended the NY premiere of the film, "In
the Shoes of Sholom Aleichem," which stars and features
stage icon Theodore Bikel. "In the Shoes of Sholom Aleichem"
illuminates Bikel's quintessenially jewish experiences with
immigration to the new world, Civil Rights and anti-war activism.
And Alan Alda, who narrates the film, presented a lifetime achievement
award to Theodore Bikel on behalf of the now Century-old National
Yiddish Theatre, Folksbiene.
American in Paris" and "On the Town" take Fred
and Adele Astaire Awards
Sometimes theater awards shows are a chore to sit through. Lots
of “thank you, thank you…..” to boredom. But
the Fred and Adele Astaire awards June 1 for best dancers and
choreographers was a delight. Minimum “thank you’s”
and maximum dance. By Lucy Komisar
Croyden, veteran theather critic and world's authority on Jerzy
Grotowski and Peter Brook, dies at 92
New York, Feb. 23 -- Margaret Croyden, the well known
critic, commentator, and journalist whose pieces on the theater
and the arts have appeared in The New York Times in the Arts
& Leisure section as well as The New York Times Magazine,
died Sunday, February 22 at Lillian Booth Actors' Home in Englewood,
NJ, where she had resided for two weeks due to declining health.
She was 92.
review: “The Partnership: Brecht, Weill, Three Women,
and Germany on the Brink”
Pamela Katz, whose film, television and fiction writing demonstrate
a longtime interest in Weill and Brecht, concentrates on their
collaboration in her new book, “The Partnership: Brecht,
Weill, Three Women, and Germany on the Brink.” New Yorkers
had the opportunity to get a glimpse of the author and her work
on Jan. 9 when the 86th Street Barnes and Noble hosted “A
Reading with Music,” featuring the author reading excerpts
from her book, and Amy Burton (singer) and Gerald Howard (piano)
performing Brecht and Weill’s best-known work. By Paulanne
around like a fish out of water… at The Joyce Theater
New York premiere of "Hapless Bizarre," a delightful
dance for six performers including a new vaudevillian and the
reprise of "Mo(or)town/Redux", which revisits, both
Shakespeare’s Othello and Jose Limón’s seminal
modern dance, choreographed by Doug Elkins Choreography, etc.
By Philip Sandstrom.
Rouge" at Theater-Lounge
the serious nature of the first dance, with its period shoes,
luscious costumes, tight group work, and fantastic singing by
the operatic soprano Brett Umlauf. Umlauf’s exceptional
vocal quality, nuanced performance and consistent delivery throughout
the show made for pure pleasure. By Philip Sandstrom.
Dark and Wacky Side of Life
The Amoralists proudly present The Gyre, a two
play repertory exploring man's vicious cycles, featuring the
World Premiere of Derek Ahonen's "The Qualification of
Douglas Evans", directed by James Kautz, and the world
premiere of Mark Roberts' "Enter at Forest Lawn",
directed by Jay Stull. By Philip Sandstrom.
Sofian Celebrates 35 Years
The Anahid Sofian Dance Company celebrated its
35th Anniversary June 28 and 29, 2014 at Manhattan Movement
& Arts Center, presenting a retrospective of its signature
works and works by guest artists: Nourhan Sharif and Dancers,
The Sera Solstice Ensemble, Souren Baronian Music Ensemble and
Carlos Fittante & Robin Gilbert. By Barney Yates.
Voices: The Art of Supertitles
We are accustomed to speaking about many disciplines of the
performing arts, but the art of supertitles is almost always
overlooked. Althought indispensable to world theater, this art
is under-appreciated. Both mysterious art and art of compromise,
supertitles is, "A way of connecting different cultures,"
according to Mauro Conti of Presscott Studio in Italy. By Claire
and Dancing towards the Heavens.
The newest Wooster Group work directed by: Kate Valk, "Early
Shaker Spirituals" is a performance based on a 1976 LP
of Shaker hymns, marches, anthems, and testimony recorded by
Sister R. Mildred Barker and the sisters of the Shaker community
in Sabbathday Lake, Maine. The show features Cynthia Hedstrom,
Elizabeth LeCompte, Frances McDormand, Suzzy Roche with Matthew
Brown, Modesto Jimenez, Bobby McElver, Bebe Miller, and Andrew
review: Two views of "New Orleans Carnival Krewes: The
History, Spirit & Secrets of Mardi Gras"
Jack Anderson writes: People like to parade. People
like to party. People like to don extravagant or even outlandish
outfits that have nothing to do with the sober stuff they might
choose as workaday attire. People simply like to show off. And
certain communities are celebrated for allowing citizens and
visitors to do just that. One city famous, even notorious, for
revelry is New Orleans, with its balls, parades, and carnivals.
Mardi Gras ("Fat Tuesday") may literally be only a
single day: the day preceding Ash Wednesday, which opens the
penitential season of Lent. But in New Orleans the Mardi Gras
spirit seizes the city weeks before that and never really leaves
it.Paulanne Simmons adds: Most of all, O'Neill reveals how Mardi
Gras epitomizes the best in New Orleans: the sense of family,
the love of life that comes with food and drink and dress, and
the special magic that are the soul of this great city.
Precision" by Douglas Lackey
Jerry Tallmer, who served in World War
II as a radioman on B-25 bombers, previews "Daylight
Precision" by Douglas Lackey, a play that takes us back
to World War II and into the great controversies involving strategic
bombing. In that war, the U.S. began by avoiding population
centers but ended up destroying them. Lackey shows how the change
came about by tracing the careers of Generals Haywood Hansell
and Curtis ("Bomb them back to the Stone Age") LeMay.
Over 700,000 civilians lost their lives because Hansell lost
his command to LeMay and this play characterizes Hansell as
the unsung tragic hero of World War II. Theater for the New
City presents the provocative history play February 21 to March
16, directed by Alexander Harrington.
in the Body You Have
There are a lot of life's lessons you can learn from productions
of mixed-ability companies, where wheelchairs and crutches are
danced with as partners, props, or conceptual objects d'art.
"The Women's Stories Project," by Kitty Lunn's Infinity
Dance Theater, is one such experience. By Barney Yates.
W. Sandstrom interviews Tere O'Connor about his new work “BLEED”
that is premiering at BAM Fisher in the Fishman Space.
Ich, Kürbisgeist is set in a harsh, quasi-medieval landscape
facing destruction, populated by a community speaking a rigorous,
specific and completely invented language, where each word is
a somewhat-recognizable amalgam of English, Swedish, German
and Sid Caesar. Partly centered on the annual harvest, the work
includes at least 100 pumpkins, with new ones needed for every
performance. By Philip J. Sandstrom.
presents Angelin Preljocaj’s "And then, one thousand
years of peace"
A work inspired by the apocalypse as conjured by St. John in
the Book of Revelations and created with an international team
of collaborations. Interview with Angelin Preljocaj By Philip
first time at La MaMa
Yara Arts Group's "Fire. Water. Night, " conceived
and directed by Virlana Tkacz, was a sudden immersion experience
for me into the international, interdisciplinary forms of theater
that La MaMa is known for. This combination of dance and theatre
based on Ukrainian myth was incredibly dynamic, featuring audience
participation in every facet of the piece. By William Gutierrez.
Jean Stapleton: The Mingling Miracles of Edith Bunker
goodbye to actress Jean Stapleton, best known for playing loveable
wife and mother Edith Bunker on long-running sitcom "All
in the Family." By Jerry Tallmer.