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Loney's Show Notes


By Glenn Loney, September 2016
About Glenn Loney

Glenn Loney
Caricature of Glenn Loney by Sam Norkin.

Please click on " * " to skip to each subject in this index:

Edla Cusick’s AUSTIN [Not Rated] *
Chris Marlowe or Bill Shakespeare’s TWELFTH NIGHT [*****]
*
George Brant’s MARIE & ROSETTA [*****]
*
Jerome Weidman, George Abbott, Jerry Bock, & Sheldon Harnick’s FIORELLO! [*****]
*
Modern Mythmakers’ PHAEDRA(S) [***]
*
Richard Nelson’s WHAT DID YOU EXPEXCT? [**]
*
Julia Cho’s AUBERGINE [*****]
*
Bess Wohl’s SMALL MOUTH SOUNDS [****]
*
Nathan Alan Davis’ NAT TURNER IN JERUSALEM [*****]
*
Steve Cosson & The Civilians’ THE UNDERTAKING [*****]
*
Simon McBurney’s ENCOUNTER [*****]
*
Helder Guimarães’ VERSO: TRUTH IN DECEPTION [*****]
*
Dick Tarlow & Bill Smith’s THE TRIAL OF AN AMERICAN PRESIDENT--WHAT IF? [****]
*

 

 

PASSING GLANCES AT SHOW SCENES SEEN:

At The Lion Theatre on Theatre Row:

Edla Cusick’s AUSTIN [Not Rated]

 Stop Playwriting Workshops! They Don’t Seem To Work…

But There’s No Stopping Edla Cusick When Performer Vanity Is at Work!

 No, This Staged Oddity down at the Lion is not about Austin Pendleton…

It was Advertised as Ninety Minutes Long--with No Intermission.

Nonetheless, that Time Span seemed an Eternity!

 Unfortunately, we are not in Austin, TX, but, instead, we are watching a Vanity Showcase for the Flamboyant Flaneur, THOMAS G. WAITES, whose Name is spelled out in LARGE CAPITALS on the Playbill Title Page.

Ed Setrakian has Framed a Narrative--with frequent annoying Set Changes--for THOMAS G. WAITES to Rage Around the Stage as a supposedly Recovered Alcoholic who has Marriage, Brother, Daughter, & Gardner Problems.

Even if you didn’t have a Hearing Aid, you could surmise that Austin has Identity Problems with his Inner Homo…

This Once in a Lifetime Enigmatic Theatre Experience would not have been so Agonizing to Suffer Through, had the Lion Hearted Management not operated the In You Face Air Conditioning at Full Speed.

The only time I have been anywhere nearly so Cold as this was when I had a Midnight Camel Ride out in the Moroccan Desert Sands, followed by a Sub Arctic Night in a Tiny Bedouin Tent…

 

At The Delacorte Shakespeare Theatre in Central Park:

Chris Marlowe or Bill Shakespeare’s TWELFTH NIGHT [*****]

 This Merry Elizabethan Romp Is Subtitled: What You Will!

What Will or Chris Actually Willed, We Know Not, But Joe Papp’s Players Give It Their All!

Three Rousing Cheers for Public Works & This Bardic Gender Bender!

Overhead, the Stage Frame is topped with Pink Umbrellas: Les Parapluies de Cherbourg have left France & Emigrated to Central Park!

Suddenly, the Stage Space is teeming with Five Boro Talent, as Marlowe or Shakespeare’s most Haunting & Charming Lyrics are Set to Music by Shaina Taub, who has taken the Permissible Liberty of Improving & Updating the Originals.

In fact, as Enthusiastically Performed by Comedic Characters, Community Partners, & Cameo Groups, this Three Day Only End of Summer Supercharged Music Drama is a Worthy Challenger to Lin Manuel’s In The Heights, if not quite Another Hamilton.

Actually, it’s Hammy enough to Feed the Biblical Five Thousand…

So, Salvos of Cheers & Applause for Kwame Kwei Armah--who Conceived this Bardic Cross Dressing Conceit with Shaina Taub & also Staged it, assisted by Choreographer Lorin Latarro.

Hey! As Oskar Eustis--the Public Theatre’s Current Stand In for Joe Papp--reminded the Capacity Audience: The Delacorte Theatre belongs to All of Us, as does Central Park itself!

Among the Performance Specialists--which included a Line of Parisian High Kickers: Gaieté Parisienne in Sheep Meadow!--were such Outstanding Cameo Groups as Cobu, the Jambalaya Brass Band, the New York Deaf Theatre, the Love Show, & the National Association of Letter Carriers!

Mayor Bill De Blasio was Unfortunately Unable to Participate, as he was Elsewhere, possibly creating Affordable Housing out on Governor’s Island, which was having an Art Show in Fort Jay!

 

At The Atlantic Theatre Company’s Linda Gross Theatre:

George Brant’s MARIE & ROSETTA [*****]

 Next Stop: Broadway! 

Dynamic Duo of Kecia Lewis & Rebecca Naomi Jones Are Musical Dynamite:

Swinging The Gospel, Sister Rosetta Tharpe Lives Again!

But Why Is She Surrounded by All Those Caskets?

Looking at the Profusion of Upscale Caskets on an Otherwise Bare Stage, Viewers way find this Mortuary Scene Initially Puzzling: Where are we?

 Fortunately, Sister Rosetta Tharpe--who has just had a Make Up Job by Marie, an Aspiring Vocalist--soon reveals the Purpose of this Seemingly Initial Meeting!

Sister Rosetta--already famous as Swinging Gospel Singer--is looking for a Talented Young Woman to work with her.

But not as a Back Stage Assistant nor as a Back Up Singer…

Sister Rosetta wants to have a Young Partner with her On The Road!

Fortunately, Marie Knight not only can do Piano Accompaniment, but she can also Belt Them Out With The Best.

Kecia Lewis & Rebecca Naomi Jones--as Sister Rosetta & Marie--then proceed to Raise the Rafters with Gospel, Soul, & Swing until the Excited Audience bursts into Bouts of Frantic Applause.

Wow! I knew already that both Lewis & Jones had Big Broadway Credits, but I had No Idea that they could also Make It Big Time as Carnegie & Geffen Hall Concert Stars!

When Marie & Rosetta soon surely Makes Its Move to Broadway, how about the Booth Theatre?

When Sister Rosetta tells Marie about the Early Days: Gospel Singing in Sunday Church, followed by Soul Singing in Whatever Space she could find, I thought maybe she’d just sung for a Funeral & was now in the Casket Showroom.

But Always Upscale! No Wooden Coffins here!

Only at the Close--so Very Quiet after so Much Joyous Exaltation--when Marie again applies Lipstick to Sister & to Her Own Lips, kissing her a Fond Last Goodbye--did I finally realize that this Entire Evening had been a Musical Mortuary Memorial to One of The Greats…

In the Midst of Life, Rosetta, We are in Death, but at least you can still get to Sing Out about Vibrant Life Eight Times Weekly!

In Whatever Celestial Kingdom you now Live, Move & Have Your Being, you can take Evangelical Pride in having Impressed & Influenced both Elvis & Bob Dylan!

 

The Berkshire Theatre Group at The Classic Stage Company:

Jerome Weidman, George Abbott, Jerry Bock, & Sheldon Harnick’s FIORELLO! [*****]

 Dynamic Dancing, Clever Choreography, Enthusiastic Energy, & Great Production Values:

All Animate a Revival of a Musical Life History of One of America’s Greatest Mayors…

 The New York Times has just Cut all its Regional Cultural Coverage--so much for the Paper of Record!--so the Berkshire Theatre Group has had the Bright Idea of bringing its Fast Paced Fiorello! to Manhattan.

There’s a Lot of Talent on the Skyscaper Strewn Stage down on East 14thStreet, but Austin Scott Lombardi certainly makes a Handsome Civic Hero.

Indeed, All of the Large Cast are in Fine Voice & Full of Civic Outrage or Tammany Malfeasance, as the Plot demands.

Unfortunately, the LaGuardia Career Chronology--an Old Fashioned Musical Theatre Device--may tell Modern Audiences more than they really want to know about both Labor & Sexual Relations in the Early Decades of the 20th Century.

Not to Overlook the Rampant Endemic Muni Graft & Corruption, which Mayor Fiorello H. LaGuardia did so much to Stamp Out, as well as reading the Funny Papers on the Radio for NY Kidz during a Newspaper Strike.

Among the More Memorable Musical Moments are Politics & Poker, Little Tin Box, & The Name’s LaGuardia.

 Michael Callahan’s Clockwork Choreography keeps the Cast in almost Constant Motion, to Excellent Effect.

But Director Robert Moss deserves Full Marks as well.

Bob Moss is the Man Who Saved Theatre Row, establishing Playwrights Horizons in a block of Failed Butcher Shops way down on West Forty Second Street.

Bob also has a Good Eye for Young Talent: you’ll be seeing more of some of these Stars of Tomorrow further Uptown.

Perhaps this Production is not as Polished as a Broadway Replay might require, but it is certainly up to the High Standard set by the Paper Mill Playhouse, over in Millburn, NJ.

 

At The Harvey Theatre of BAM:

Modern Mythmakers’ PHAEDRA(S) [***]

 Labyrinthian Paris Production Revisits & Reimagines Incest Ridden Theseus Family:

Isabelle Huppert Is a Protean Phaedra, But Finale a Bad Language Evening for Interview Auditors

F**k Off, All You Revisionist Frenchies!

Never have I heard so many Randomly Inserted F**kings in One Evening as in BAM’s recent Parisian Import…

No Matter, really. What I most wanted to see On Stage was France’s National Treasure, Isabelle Huppert!

As if she needed it, La Huppert has been Awkwardly Canonized by The New York Times: "…[Isabelle Huppert is] one of the French Screen’s most Fearless and Incisive Stars."

Not only that! Isabelle Huppert can speak Rapid Fire French faster than Almost Anyone, including Jacques Tati & François Hollande.

She was Hilarious as Edith Costello, being interviewed by a Self Congratulatory Adulator, somewhat in the manner of an Evening at the 92 Street Y on Manhattan’s Upper East Side.

Edith Costello notes her Attraction to the Famed Berkeley Poet, Robert Duncan--whom I knew when I was at UC--but she does realize that she was Not His Type…

But this was not really Edith Costello at all!

No, Indeed!

Isabelle Huppert was actually the Mythic Phaedra, who fell in Forbidden Love with her Step Son, Hippolytus.

The Odéon Théâtre de l’Europe Production, briefly at BAM, was a Long Way Off from Euripides or Seneca, inspired rather by Texts of Sarah Kane, JM Coetzee, & Wajdi Mouawad--with a Bracing Infusion of Racine.

Thanks to the Directorial Vision of Krzyszof Warlikowski--with the Dramaturgical Assistance of Piotr Gruszczynski, who was obviously Not Poles Apart from Warlikowski’s Fevered Imagination--Isabelle Huppert was First Seen on the almost Bare Stage Scene as Aphrodite, who soon became an Ardent Shape Shifter & Wig Changer.

Fortunately, Phaedra’s Illicit Passion was Challenged by a Stalwart Hippolyte, powerfully embodied by Andrzej Chyra. [Poles Apart, Poles Together!]

Norah Krief was Outstanding as an Arab Singer, as well as Oenone.

In fact, the Entire Cast was Erotically Admirable, especially considering that this Magnum Opus of Three Phaedras was over Three Hours Long!

An Explantory Program Note offers this Insight: "…its Heroine as a Brutalized Victim--alternately Bloodied, Blonde Wigged, & Professorial" as well as "…this Postmodernist Plunge into Forbidden Love, where Sexuality wear Sunglasses en route to Illicit Ends."

What I could Not Understand was what that Lissome Lady with Very Little On was doing up on stage, variously Posturing & Prancing?

In the BAM Program, her Unsung Role is noted as: Arab Dancer.

What is this Business with Arabs?

King Minos’ Krete--where Phaedra was Royally Birthed & Theseus slew the Minotaur--is a Long Way Off from Arabia.

Is this one of those Parisian Pieds Noirs Hang Ups?

Peter Brook--who is soon to come to BAM--famously created the Empty Stage Concept, which Stage Designer Malgorzata Szczniak has recreated as an Immense Empty Cube--which can be Visually Violated by the Periodic Insertion of a Big Glass Box, in which Erotic Scenes can be Visualized.

At the Eventual Ending of Phaedra’s Varied Incarnations, the Entire Audience--except for those who Escaped Earlier--stood to give Rounds of Rousing Applause to Isabelle Huppert & her Erotic Cohorts!

Warsaw’s Loss is Paris’ Gain, but those Damn SZCZs are Hard to Type…

 

At The Public Theatre:

Richard Nelson’s WHAT DID YOU EXPEXCT? [**]

 This Is Play 2 of The Gabriels: Election Year in the Life of One Family…

But There’s More To Come: The November General Election & Possible Trump Coronation!

Richard Nelson both Wrote & Directed this Soon To Be Historical Drama, similar to his First Bout with Contemporary Familial Historicism: The Apple Family Plays.

 At the Opening, Chairs are Stacked on Tables, as the Cast silently Sets the Stage, putting the Chairs in Place, placing Pictorial Magnets on the Fridge, & preparing the Kitchen Table for a Lot of Dicing & Slicing of Real Live Vegetables!

For the First Time, I really understood just how to Finely Dice an Onion into its Smallest Segments!

Well, this Minuteae Ridden Production--which Sold Out in 48 Hours, according to Oskar Eustis, Joe Papp’s current Stand In--is not only about Reactions to the Recent Primary, but also about Family Memories, including the Reading Aloud of Old Jottings & Journals.

As I am just beginning to go through an Old Loney Family Box of My Dad’s Diaries, I felt a certain Resonance with The Gabriels & their Almost Total Recallings.

My Proposed Book is Temporarily Titled: My Father Never Hit Me!

 That’s True! He never Laid a Hand on Me!

Unlike My Mother, who firmly believed in what she thought was a Biblical Commandment: Spare The Rod & Spoil The Child!

 Actually, that was Wise Old Ben Franklin, in Poor Richard’s Almanac

Anyway, Roberta Maxwell, Jay O. Sanders, Maryann Plunkett, Lynn Hawley, Amy Warren & Meg Gibson were Very Lifelike in Portraying The Gabriels.

No One ever ate all those Cookies that came out of the Oven…

Unfortunately, at the Close, they did not remove the Fridge Magnets nor put the Chairs back on top of the Table…

Don’t Hold Your Breath!

The Magnets will be back after the General Election!

If The Donald Wins, will we get some more Family Albums to Look Through?

 

At The Mainstage Theatre of Playwrights Horizons:

Julia Cho’s AUBERGINE [*****]

 A Difficult Long Goodbye to a Dying Father--Who Never Told His Son What He Needed To Hear…

Ray is a Master Chef, but that Gleaming Aubergine is Only a Prop, not to be Diced & Sliced, as in another Off Broadway Play.

Ray may well be a Master Chef, but he has not Mastered His Anger with his Taciturn Korean Father, who is now Dying of Liver Disease.

Ray’s Dad never told him that his Cooking Was Good or that He Was Proud of Ray.

As Dad lies Dying at Home Upstage, Ray is Downstage, dealing with his Recently Arrived Korean Uncle--who never got along with Ray’s Dad.

This is a Wonderfully Acted, Ingeniously Mounted Evocation of Love, Loss, Dreams, Despair, & Final Redemption.

Tim Kang is a Driven Dynamo as Ray: Torn This Way & That--but always striving for the Ultimate in Taste Sensations.

If Not in Human Relations…

Fortunately, Ray is surrounded by Loving Friends & Home Helpers, who Understand Ray & his Dad better than he ever could.

Kudos to Sue Jean Kim, Jessica Love, Stephen Park, Michael Potts, & Joseph Stephen Yang: a Cast almost Good Enough to Eat, Metaphorically Speaking…

Yes, there are English Translations of the Korean Conversations projected on an Upstage Wall!

Kate Whoriskey sensitively staged Aubergine, handsomely abetted by the Semi Circular Enclosures of Derek McLane.

Hey, Ray! I know what it’s like to have a Parent who never says: I’m Proud of You…

 Anyway, a Lovely Play with Loving People!

 

At The Pershing Square Signature Theatre Center in the Romulus LinneyTheatre:

Bess Wohl’s SMALL MOUTH SOUNDS [****]

 Meditation Can Be Really Hard Work: You Have to Focus & Keep Your Mouth Shut! 

Small Mouth Sounds is not exactly another Circle, Mirror, Transformation, but it has some of the Same Elements.

An Odd Assortment of Psychic Misfits has gathered out in Raw Nature for a Meditation Retreat.

It is led by an Unseen Spooky Guru who would never get USDA Approval.

Not only do these Desperate Seekers have his Vocal Guidance, but they also have Black Folders containing Seminar Outlines & various Do’s & Don’ts.

Golden Silence is one of these, but--in extremis of Human Frustration--they find that Sign Language is not only Not Enough; it is sometimes Misunderstood.

Director Rachel Chavkin is fortunate in her Eventually Lovable Cast: Max Baker, Bakak Tafti, Brad Heberlee, Marcia DeBonis, Quincy Tyler Bernstine, Jojo Gonzalez, Zoë Winters, James Seal & Carmen Zilles.

Who really knows what Wonders of Self Knowledge can be revealed by just Being Quiet?

It’s not easy when you are consumed by Inner Turmoil…

This Ars Nova Production is set up with the Audience flanking what is essentially a Long Acting Corridor, with Raised Platform & just enough Chairs for the Participants at One End.

Above this Corridor on either side are Video Projections of various Aspects of Nature, so the Acting Space needs No Scenery: Rolled Up Japanese Matting is Enough…

There are plenty of Amusing Moments, but there is also an Underlying Sadness.

 

At The New York Theatre Workshop:

Nathan Alan Davis’ NAT TURNER IN JERUSALEM [*****]

 God Speaks to Nat Turner, But The Results Are Unfortunate for Almost All Who Are Involved…

As Nat Turner, Phillip James Brannon is almost a Force of Nature, if not quite an Avenging Angel.

On 21 August 1831, Turner, a Black Slave--who knows His Scriptures & who is Guided by God--launched a Rebellion against "Whitey," soon killing 12 White Men 19 White Women, & 24 White Children.

Considering the Huge Numbers of Black Slave Children who had been Abused, Abducted, Starved, & Murdered by White Oppressors, Turner considers this a Just Retribution--with the Added Advantage that Innocent Kiddies go Directly to Heaven!

Although Loaded Down with Pounds of Chains & awaiting an Early Morning Hanging, the Tightly Imprisoned Nat Turner is still Hearing the Voice of God & Quoting His Commandments.

Turner’s Jerusalem is not near Tel Aviv, but, instead, in Virginia

He is having a Last Visit from Thomas R, Gray, who is recording The Confessions of Nat Turner, which Gray is insistent on Copyrighting, registering his Copyright in Baltimore.

Just to make sure he’s got Everything Correct, Gray Closely Questions his Tightly Bound Subject, which is a Plot Device that provides Historical Background & Emotional Insight into the Whys & Wherefores of both the Turner Rebellion & Turner’s Messianic Vision.

Rowan Vickers--in a Thick Virginian Accent--plays both Gray & a Sympathetic Prison Guard.

For Some Odd Reason, the Slightly Raised Platform on which these Turner Ruminations are rendered keeps moving slowly across the Stage Space--which like Small Mouth Sounds--is between Two Sets of the Bleachered Audience.

Megan Sandberg Zakian staged, so she & Scenic Designer Susan Zeeman Rogers surely had Something in Mind when they decided to have the Platform Stage Slowly Scoot toward Stage Right.

Black Lives Matter today, but, back in the Long Years of Southern Slavery, they mattered hardly at all to Slave Owning Whites. Except as Property, with a Cash Value…

Post Turner Thoughts: Is the Catholic Concept of The Last Judgment, with the Back Ups of Heaven, for Winners, & Hell, for Losers, just another Christian Conspiracy Theory?

This could, of course, be Divinely Inspired

 

At The Fisher Theatre’s Fishman Space at BAM:

Steve Cosson & The Civilians’ THE UNDERTAKING [*****]

 Condemned To Death! Every Last One of Us! You Won’t Get Out of This Life Alive

What should you Wear to Your Funeral?

If you Confidently Expect to be Resurrected in your Current Form, should you have your Body & your Brain Embalmed?

Should you be wearing Make Up in your Coffin or Casket?

Would that be an Egregious Vanity?

Will Your Entire Family be waiting for you on The Other Side?

These Questions--suggested by Steve Cosson & Jessica Mitrani in The Undertaking--have Special Relevance for Yours Truly.

After I Fell on My Head--while Photographing the Golden Gate Bridge & going into Coma Mode--I ended up with Eight Holes in My Skull, to drain off Brain Blood which just kept on Flowing.

So, the Upshot is that when I die, My Brain is to be Extracted from My Skull & rushed to Mt. Sinai’s Brain Trauma Center for Intensive Examination.

But The Undertaking isn’t only about Preparing for Certain Death…

After all, from the Moment you are Born, you are Marching Onward toward Your Death.

As the Poet said: In the Midst of Life, we are in Death…

 If you believe that you will be Reborn on this Planet into a new Body & Life--that you have Been Here Before--why didn’t you Learn anything from your Previous Lives?

If you were once an Egyptian Prince on the Banks of The Nile, why are you still Voting Republican?

BAM & the Théâtre de la Ville--which the BAM Program notes is located in (Paris, France)--are Co Presenters of The Undertaking, which features Steve Cosson, as Steve & Others, balanced by Irene Lucio as Lydia & Others.

Steve & Irene are, in performance, Shape Shifters: We are in Manhattan, making what seems to be a Video Interview; then we are in Paris (France), looking at Vintage French Film Footage, some of which seems to feature Jean Cocteau’s Male Model Muse.

Jacque Derrida is Cited, but not Derided…

As The Ancients are often referenced--Socrates, Aristophanes, the Mythic Dionysus & Orpheus in the Underworld--it’s perhaps appropriate that Steve & Irene point out that we are Ventriloquists for the Voices of the Past.

Immortality is Best Achieved through The Arts…

Perhaps the Best Way not to be Forgotten is to write a Great Sonnet?

Or The Iliad, The Frogs, Oedipus Rex, The Confessions of Saint Augustine, Hamlet

Dealing with Death & Fears of Death, Steve & Irene are seen in various Settings, Situations, & Identities, but they always inhabit a somewhat Sterile Room, whose Severely White Fabric Walls can be splashed with Absurdist Colors that slowly transmute into Patterns or Places, thanks to the Projection Designs of Tal Yarden.

Marcia Ginsberg is credited with Set & Costume Design.

Thomas Munn’s Stage Lighting Credit reminded me that I once did a Feature on Tom Munn, when he was Lighting Chief at the San Francisco Opera.

Although she does not Appear Onstage, Jessica Mitrani is both Steve Cosson’s Collaborator & Psychopomp--which has nothing at all to do with Pomp & Circumstance

Nonetheless, The Undertaking does serve to remind us that we are all Destined To Die, reminding us also of such Poetic Ruminations as: When I have fears that I may cease to be…

 Something about a Teeming Brain… 

Teeming Brain Problems? Take them to The Mount Sinai Brain Clinic!

 

At The Golden Theatre:

Simon McBurney’s ENCOUNTER [*****]

 Lost in the Amazon Jungle, But with Surround Sound & Earphones for Everyone!

What would Cutting Edge Stage Productions be without Advanced Technology?

Down at the Public Theatre, you needed a Cell Phone to participate in Daniel Radcliffe’s Recent Foray into App Magic.

Now, at the Golden Theatre, you need a Pair of Headphones to enter into the Dense Amazon Rainforest with Simon McBurney as your Hyper Animated Guide

Fortunately, Every Seat in this Historic Broadway Playhouse has a Pair in Working Order, which is Tested & Re tested before the Actual Audio Visual Event begins.

As McBurney lopes & bounds around the Stage--littered with Plastic Water Bottles & Audio Tech Devices--he recreates Petro Popescu’s book, Amazon Beaming.

This Cautionary Narrative of an almost Prehistoric Native Tribe--retreating deep into the Impenetrable Rainforest to escape Exploitation, Enslavement, or Death at the Unseen Hands of Greedy Capitalists--is a Lesson To Us All!

The Protean Simon McBurney is a Multi Olivier Award Winner & the Founder of Complicité, whose Innovative Productions are often Highlights of Major European Theatre Festivals.

Nonetheless, I was more Transfixed by the Sounds Around Me--Near & Far--heard privately in my Own Headphones than I was by Amazonian Adventures & all that Lost Archival Photography, when the Archival Natives, in an Orgy of Object Destruction, wrecked both Exposed Film & Camera!

Was that a Leica?

Bravo, Simon McBurney!

Bravo, Leica!

Multi Bravi, All Those House Head Phones!

Archival Note: Broadway Producer John Golden--for whom the Golden Theatre is named--loved to Play Golf in Florida, leaving the American Woman Playwright, Rachel Crothers, to Produce at the Golden in his Stead.

 

At New World Stages:

Helder Guimarães’ VERSO: TRUTH IN DECEPTION [*****]

 Is This Deck Stacked?

The Hand Is Quicker Than The Eye! The Mouth Is Faster Than The Mind!

Helder Is Better than Dunninger, The Master Mentalist, So Pick a Card, Any Card…

The Audience was Packed at Verso, but the Decks may well have been Stacked.

How else to explain Why & How Helder Guimarães was able to know what Card you were holding or what he had Up His Sleeve?

With his Portuguese Inflected Charm, Helder Guimarães made the Capacity Audience Fall in Love with him: so much so that they seemed to be buying every Card Trick Souvenier in sight.

With Card Tricks--as with Three Card Monte--the Hand must always be Quicker than the Eye.

But it also helps to have a Line of Patter that so absorbs & delights the Spectators that they do not realize what is really Going On. Before, as we used to say, Their Very Eyes…

Why, for instance, did Helder Guimarães take off his Fitted Suit Coat, place it carefully on a Hangar, & then suspend it from a Niche in the House Filling Surround Installation of Wooden Crates, which looked like Fugitives from a Whole Foods Warehouse?

When Helder Guimarães finally took that Suit Coat off the Hangar & slipped his Slim Arms into it, was there now Something Up Those Sleeves that a Possible Confederate might have slipped into them when Our Eyes Were Elsewhere?

This is a Small Scale Show, with no Rabbits in the Hat or Women Sawed in Half.

But it is a Real Winner! Go! Go! Go!

You won’t be Disappointed. Instead, you may yourself Fall in Love with Helder Guimarães!

At least you can buy Lots of Magical Memories--including Packs of Unmarked Cards!

But, you may well ask, just Who Is This Mystery Man of Magic?

Glad You Asked!

Helder Guimarães, at age 23, became a World Champion of Card Magic, a distinction usually reserved for Older Tricksters.

Helder Guimarães is Very Big at Hollywood’s Magic Castle, which earned him--in both 2011 & 2012--the Honorific Title of Parlour Magician of the Year.

Helder Guimarães was also featured at the TED Conference in 2014!

Helder Guimarães’ Best Selling & Longest Running Nothing To Hide--directed by Neil Patrick Harris--"received Rave Audience Reviews & Critical Acclaim" at the Prestigious Geffen Playhouse in Los Angeles, moving on to New York City, with all 110 Performances Sold Out!

This is a Limited Run, so Do Not Miss Out!

Outside the Wooden Box Laden Magic Theatre, the T Shirt & Accessories Salespersons were doing a Brisk Business of making Our Money Disappear!

Burdened & Fatigued & also Afraid that I might be Enlisted to Sign the Ace of Spades or Get Up on the Stage to Unlock a Magic Box, I pulled my Own Trick: I did a Disappearing Act…

 

At The Lion Theatre on Theatre Row:

Dick Tarlow & Bill Smith’s THE TRIAL OF AN AMERICAN PRESIDENT--WHAT IF? [****]

 Ex President George W. Bush Agrees To Stand Trial for War Crimes in The Hague!

Dream On, Ye Seekers after Justice…

Our "War President" is never going off to Holland to Stand Trial for the Multiple War Crimes involved in "Bringing Democracy to Iraq."

Nonetheless, down on Theatre Row, they are imagining "What If," then allowing some Selected Audience Members to Vote "Guilty" or for "Acquittal."

Tony Carlin was fairly convincing as Jeb Bush’s Older Brother, but it is unfortunate that Condoleeza Rice, Dick Cheney, & Don Rumsfeld could not also have been Indicted.

Mahira Kakkar was the Narrator, who obviously had already Cast Her Vote against Bush, with Michael Rogers as the Prosecutor, a kind of Judicial Avenging Angel.

At the close, when the Ballots were counted, Bush stood Convicted, Six to Three…

The Three Holdouts may well have also been Trump Supporters.

Projections & Videos enhanced the Proceedings, reminding those Spectators who may already have forgotten about Abu Ghraib of the Multiple Horrors engendered by Bush’s "Blood for Oil" Agenda.

The Projection Design was the Handiwork of Kevan Loney.

Could Kev be a Distant Relative?

 

Copyright Glenn Loney, 2016. No re-publication or broadcast use without proper credit of authorship. Suggested credit line: "Glenn Loney, New York Theatre Wire." Reproduction rights please contact: jslaff@nytheatre-wire.com.

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