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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.

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Bill Shakespeare or Chris Marlowe’s CORIOLANUS [*****] *

Qui Nguyen’s VIETGONE [****] *

Horton Foote’s THE ROADS TO HOME [*****] *

Adam Bock’s A LIFE [***] *

William Finn & James Lapine’s FALSETTOS [****] *

Athol Fugard’s "MASTER HAROLD" … AND THE BOYS [*****] *

Nicky Silver’s THIS DAY FORWARD [*****] *

Signor Carlo Goldoni’s THE SERVANT OF TWO MASTERS [*****] *

Various Cooks Concoct PARTY PEOPLE [*****] *

Richard Nelson’s WOMEN OF A CERTAIN AGE: Play 3 of The Gabriels: Election Year in the Life of One Family [*****] *

Lynn Nottage’s SWEAT [*****] *

Chazz Palminteri, Alan Menken, & Glenn Slater’s A Bronx Tale [*****] *


At The Red-Bull-Theatre at the Barrow-Street-Theatre:

Bill Shakespeare or Chris Marlowe’s CORIOLANUS [*****]

Egotistical-Mama’s-Boy Won’t Show-His-Wounds To Vulgar-Roman-Public!

Among the Bardic-Tragedies with Roman-Italian-Roots, Coriolanus has always been a Problematic-Production-Project.

Not Truly-Tragic like Antony & Cleopatra or Julius Caesar…

Defeating the Detested-Enemy-Volscians in Pitched-Battle in their Capital-City of Corioli, the Heroic-Roman-General, Caius Martius, is awarded the Honorific of Corolanus.

Unfortunately, Caius Martius Coriolanus suffers an Epic-Attack of Hubris.

Refusing to show his Battle-Wounds to the Vulgar-Roman-Public—which would have guaranteed him a Lifelong-Sinecure in High-Office—he is Exiled from Rome!

Whereupon, he goes over to the Volscians to lead them in Triumphal-Mode to the Gates-of-Rome.

Only the Passionate-Pleas of his Mother, Volumnia, are able to sway his Vengeful-Course.

This, of course, does not Turn-Out-Well.

Fortunately, the Red-Bull-Ensemble’s Current-Production turns out very well indeed because the Actors are not really Acting.

Instead, they are Inhabiting, Living, & Being their Assigned-Roles!

Not only in Named-Roles, but also as various Citizens, Senators, Conspirators, Patricians, Plebians, & Random-Soldiers!

Michael Sexton has staged—in stark-simplicity—an Admirable-Cast which includes Patrick Page, Stephen Spinella, & Dion Johnstone, as Coriolanus. Plus the powerful Voluminia of Lisa Harrow!

A Night To Remember!

But it’s also worth noting that the Red-Bullers—even in their One-Night-Only Play-Readings of almost-forgotten Elizabethan & Jacobean-Dramas—can make almost any Neglected-Script Come-Alive!


At The Manhattan-Theatre-Club at NY-City-Center’s Stage-II:

Qui Nguyen’s VIETGONE [****]

Wrong-War in Wrong-Place Encourages Asian-Playwrights!

Are They Officially-Represented by Agent-Orange?

A Refugee-Internment-Camp in the USA is a long-way-off from "Commie-Infested" Vietnam, where American-Forces have gone to turn-back the "Red-Tide" & bring the Blessings-of-Democracy.

May Adrales has strongly-staged Qui Nguyen’s Family-Drama—based on her Own-Parents’ True-Story—with a Cast that includes Jon Hoche, Paco Tolson, Raymond Lee, Jennifer Ikeda, & Samantha Quan.

Nonetheless, This Script still Needs-Work…


Primary-Stages at the Cherry-Lane-Theatre:

Horton Foote’s THE ROADS TO HOME [*****]

Hallie Foote Keeps Her Dad’s Harrison-Texas Dramatic-Legacy Alive!

What would the Cherry-Lane-Theatre-Experience look like if Hallie Foote were to appear as Amanda Wingfield or Blanche DuBois?

Not To Worry! This Year is her Dad’s Centenary, so a Charming-Revival of Roads To Home is entirely In-Order.

What’s More is that Hallie Foote, Harriet Harris, & Rebecca Brooksher honor Pulitzer-Prize-Winning-Playwright Horton Foote with a Spot-On-Group-Portrait of Three-Women living in Houston, far-off from their Native-Harrison.

Where is "Down-Home," when you are Transplanted to Houston?

Could-Be-Worse: How about Dallas?

Michael Wilson has sensitively-staged this Strong-Cast, which includes Devon Abner, Dan Bittner, & Matt Sullivan.

But we have Agnes de Mille to thank for encouraging Horton Foote to write about the Plain-Folks in Harrison, which he continued to do for Many-Years!


At The Irish-Repertory-Theatre:

E. Y. Harburg, Fred Saidy, & Burton Lane’s FINIAN’S RAINBOW [*****]

Purloined Crock-of-Gold Sparks Rainbow-Rich Multi-Ethnic-Song-Fest in Mythical-Missatucky!

Ken Jennings is an Irish-Mick-Delight as the Gold-Thieving-Finian, who has brought the Mythical-Crock-of-Gold to the Immediate-Neighborhood of Fort-Knox, where The-Powers-That-Be keep all those Millions-&-Millions-of-Dollars-Worth of Gold-Ingots!

But Irish Rep’s Charlotte Moore is the Real-Heroine of Finian’s Rainbow, for she herself has not only Adapted-&-Directed this Jolly, Tuneful, & Multi-Ethnic-Musical-Satire, but she has managed to fit it all into the somewhat Limited-Space of the Irish-Repertory-Theatre, over on West-Twenty-Second-Street.

Not only that: Charlotte Moore has also enlisted the Charm-&-Vitality of such Talents as Melissa Errico—a Lovely-Sharon; Mark Evans—a Spritely, Leprechaunish-Og; Lyrica Woodruff—a Silent, Signing-Susan, who miraculously learns to Speak, & Ryan Silverman—a Guitar-Playing-Woody.

Thanks to Barry McNabb, Charlotte Moore also has Dynamic-Choreography in a Very-Small-Space.

But even if this Finian were only In-Concert, just think of the Lyrical-&-Musical-Riches:

Old Devil Moon, Look To the Rainbow, Necessity, The Begat, This Time of the Year, If This Isn’t Love, Something Sort of Grandish, & When The Idle Poor Become The Idle Rich…

Not to Overlook that Wistful-Musical-Question: How Are Things in Glocca-Morra?

Historical-Note: There was a Yiddish-Version: How Are Things with Uncle Morris?

Next-Irish-Rep-Challenge: James Joyce’s The Dead, to be produced on Fifth-Avenue—opposite the Met-Museum—in a Handsome-Historical-Irish-Mansion, with the Audience feasting along with the Cast on Irish-Gourmet-Cuisine!


At Playwright’s-Horizons at The Peter-Jay-Sharp-Theatre:

Adam Bock’s A LIFE [***]

David Hyde Pierce Had to Die To Make This Play Possible: Coroners-On-Alert!

Would a Lesser-Luminary than David Hyde Pierce been that much of a Draw for this Self-Referential-Revelation of the Private-Musings & Sexual-Adventures of Playwright Adam Bock?

Adam Bock has already had an Amazing-Career: Awards-Galore! A Guggenheim-Grant! Yaddow! NEA-Fellowships!

What’s even More-Amazing: Adam Bock has had the Temerity—in A Life—to Pad-Out his Play with his Own-Endless-Lists.

Why are we listening to all this Astrology-Anxiety?

Well, because Adam Bock is Hung-Up on Zodiacal-Computations…

Here’s what Adam Bock has had to say about his Philosophy-of-Composition:

Well, anyone who knows me knows that I’m like—I’ll talk to everybody about Astrology.

I’ll talk to everybody about their Love-Lives.

I’ll talk to everybody about, um, Group-Therapy.

What puzzled me, listening to David Hyde Pierce maunder on-&-on about Astrology & that Hair-Salon & Bead-Shop up in Providence [RI] was: Why Are We Being Subjected to All-These-Listings?

Because The-Lists are the Core of what Adam Bock has to Share…

Adam Bock is also very generous in sharing Sexual-Adventures, including One-Night-Stands of the Same-Sex-Sort, as well as Short-Term-Set-Ups.

But there is something Really-Terrifying about the Idea of Being-Alone & Friendless in an Indifferent-Manhattan.

What happens to a Gay-Guy when the End-Comes?

When David Hyde Pierce goes into Terminal-Arrest, the Focus shifts to a Manhattan-Morgue, with its Accompanying-Accommodations.

Adam Bock & David Hyde Pierce!

Mercury is Rising-in-Taurus!

Do not eat Asparagus this Month!

Avoid Excursions to New Jersey Anytime—especially not to the Paper-Mill-Playhouse…


At The Walter-Kerr-Theatre:

William Finn & James Lapine’s FALSETTOS [****]

Sing-Out! Sing-Out! It’s Great-To-Be-Gay When The-Vice-Squad Is Out-of-Business!

Long, long ago, way down in Greenwich-Village, Composer/Lyricist William Finn—ably-abetted by Book-Author James Lapine—created a Serendipitous-Stir by concocting some Gay-Settings of Existential-Agonies.

The current Vision-&-Revision at the Walter Kerr is Handsomely-Mounted, but it still may be Something of a Shock for Donald Trump’s Ordinary-Americans to see Two-Men-Kissing-Onstage, especially when One-of-Them is a Married-Dad!

Oh, Oh! Think of Fun-Home!

Nonetheless, Christian Borle & Andrew Rannells—as Marvin & Whizzer—do make a Handsome-Twosome.

But how would you relate to Your Dad’s Best-Buddy if you were only a Little-Kid?

As Jason, Anthony Rosenthal shows us how to survive this Family-Fracture.

Survival-&-Accommodation are not so easy for the Former-Mrs-Marvin.

Fortunately, Lapine & Finn provide a Therapist!

But this is not exactly Musical-Therapy…

If Donald Trump gets Comp-Tickets to Falsettos, will he—in Rash-Anger—decide to Build-a-Stonewall across Greenwich-Village?

Just Asking…


At The Signature-Theatre:

Athol Fugard’s "MASTER HAROLD" … AND THE BOYS [*****]

An Awkward-Moment in Apartheid-South-Africa: Bad-Behavior in a Port-Elizabeth Tea-Room!

It’s a Difficult-Role for Noah Robbins—playing "Hally," or "Master-Harold"—for Playwright/Director Athol Fugard requires him to Spit-in-the-Face of a Wise-&-Kindly Black-Father-Figure, who is trying to help Hally grow into Decent-Manhood.

As Sam—working in Hally’s Mother’s Port-Elizabeth-Tearoom—Leon Addison Brown is a Tower-of-Strength in a Nation-Divided.

It’s clear that he loves the Lonely, Neglected White-Boy, dressed in Elitist-Public-School-Attire.

But he is also Good-Natured enough to try to teach his Co-Worker, Willie [Sahr Ngaujah], some Good-Moves on the Dance-Floor to attract Lively-Black-Ladies.

We never see Master Harold’s Mother, but you can bet she is a Piece-of-Work, even for British-&-Boer White-Folks, when "Whitey" Ruled-the-Roost.

That was BM: Before-Mandela!

Thanks to an Early-Exposure to the Apartheid-Oriented-Dramas of Athol Fugard, I made a Drama-Safari to South-Africa, especially to see works at Johannesburg’s famed Market-Theatre.

But, arriving initially in Cape-Town, I was Mugged in the Main-Street on My-First-Day…

I never got to have Tea in Port-Elizabeth, but it is the Last-Stop of the famous Blue-Train that runs from The Cape onward Eastward.

But The Blue-Train isn’t just some Old-Railway-Coaches painted Blue.

No, Indeed! It is the Last-Word in Last-Century Train-Transportation.

Couples or Singles have Their-Very-Own-Luxury-Suites!

In the Middle-of-the-Night, you can take a Full-Tub-Bath in your Luxury-Bathroom!

You can have Gourmet-Meals stylishly-served on Your-Own-Private-Dining-Table!

Most Historic-Rail-Travel-Enthusiasts, however, prefer to join the other Big-Spenders in the Luxuriously-Appointed-Vintage-Dining-Car for Breakfast, "Elevenses," Luncheon, Afternoon-Tea, Dinner, & Late-Night-Snacks.

There’s also a Blue-Train that runs from Pretoria to Cape-Town.

This is the Rolling-Hotel that I took on my return from a Sight-Seeing-Safari to Victoria-Falls in Zimbabwe, where I stayed in a Jungle-Hotel just inaugurated by the Self-Appointed-Dictator Robert Mugabwe.

Departing Pretoria—where there is a Statue of Om Paul Krueger, the Boer-Founder—we stopped for a few hours in Diamond-Rich Kimberley, Site of the Deepest-Mine-Pit in the World.

My late, lamented Cousin Charles Stocks—a Mining-Engineer from formerly Gold-Rich Grass Valley, California—is Buried here, but we didn’t have Time to visit the Local-Cemetery…


At The Vineyard-Theatre:

Nicky Silver’s THIS DAY FORWARD [*****]

No-Sex on Wedding-Night in Posh-Hotel: Bride Loves a Garage-Mechanic–Not Her Jewish-Groom!

Forget about Falsettos, Marching or Otherwise!

Outrageously-Naughty Nicky Silver has been Out-There with Satirically-Themed Gay-Frolics for Some-Sexy-Seasons.

How about Linda Lavin in The Lyons?

As a Long-Island-Long-Suffering-Wife, she is impatiently-waiting for her Gasping-Hubby—on Tube-Infested Hospital-Life-Support—to Definitilvely-Expire, so she can Redecorate!

Then there were Fat Men in Skirts, My Marriage to Ernest Borgnine, Wanton Lust, & Fit To Be Tied.

Holly Fain is Hilarious as the Reluctant-Bride, Irene.

She is dressed in a Lovely-Bouffant-Wedding-Gown, but she is Not-a-Happy-Camper!

She actually is attracted to Emil [Joe Tippett], a Garage-Grease-Monkey, with whom she has already had Spectacular-Sex.

Unfortunately, Emil is Off-Limits, as far as Irene’s Ambitious-Jewish-Parents are concerned.

But Michael Crain’s Fussy but Real-Estate-Rich Martin is Another-Story!

Initially, we find ourselves with Irene & Martin in a Lavish-Bridal-Suite of the St. Regis-Hotel, in Manhattan in 1958!

There is a Handsome-Fruit-Basket for the Newlyweds. As well as Piles-of-Towels, with Maids & a Busboy to Match…

Later—2004, to be Exact—we are in the New-York-City-Apartment of Noah, Martin & Irene’s Son [also played by Michael Crane], who is Outrageously-Gay.

Well! You can just imagine what happens, being a Nicky-Silver-Satire down at the Vineyard!

Mark Brokaw directed, with Stunning-Settings by Allen Moyer & Kaye Voyce’s Appropriate-Costumes.


At The Polonsky-Shakespeare-Center of The-Theatre-for-a-New-Audience:

Signor Carlo Goldoni’s THE SERVANT OF TWO MASTERS [*****]

Traditional Italian Commedia-Improvisata Is Hilariously Trump-Updated Over in Brooklyn:

"Most-Outstanding-Ensemble" Award for the Liveliest-&-Funniest-Show in Several-Seasons!

Split-Second-Timing & Juggling-Talents worthy of Cirque-du-Soleil & Bill Irwin—as well as Colorful-Costumes & Doll-Like-Make-Up—make The Servant of Two Masters a Modern-Masterpiece of Commedia dell’Arte.

As the Trickster-Clown, Truffaldino, Stephen Epps is a wonderfully-wiry Force-of-Nature.

He’s also a Double-Dipper, guarding the Huge-Trunks of Two-Masters, one of whom is actually a Mistress—not a Mattress, as one Verbal-Gag would suggest.

Yes, there are Mistaken-Identities, Doubles-Entendres, & Silly-Slapstick, worthy of the Marx-Brothers, who were Commedia-Inspired.

Originating at the Yale-Rep & raucously-staged by Christopher Bayes, Servant of Two Masters has already been shown at the Guthrie-Theatre, with a Broadway-Transfer from Brooklyn devoutly to be wished.

There are Sight-Gags-Galore, not to overlook some Gaudy-Props & Lighting-Tricks & a Fake-Proscenium.

Huzzahs for the Ingenious-Designers: Katherine Akiko Day [Scenic-Effects], Válerie Thérèse Bart [Costumes], & Chuan-Chi Chan [Lighting]!

Multi-Kudos to Adina Verson, Liz Wisan, & Emily Young, as Clarice, Beatrice, & Smeraldina, with Resounding-Cheers for the Stereotypical-Ethnics, Brighella [Liam Craig], Pantalone [Allen Gilmore], & Dottore [Andy Grotelueschen], all Italianate-Historic-Types long before Carlo Goldoni imposed some Structural-Strictures on what was previously Grab-Bag-Shtick.

Orlando Pabotoy—as Lover-Boy Florindo—is a Stylish-Study in Passionate-Self-Regard.

If Servant of Two Masters moves to Broadway, will there be a National-Company, as with Hamilton?


At The Public-Theatre’s Anspacher-Space:

Various Cooks Concoct PARTY PEOPLE [*****]

Black-Panthers Sing & Dance & Organize & Agonize & Preen & Mythologize Themselves—

But, Once Again, A Would-Be-Revolution Devours Its Own Children…

Only This Time, The Ritual-Cannibalism Occurs in a Flurry of Backward-Looking-Videos…

Sorry! I know I should care more about what happened to The-Black-Panthers—especially with All-That-Energy-Expended-Onstage & all those Big-Video-Screens—but I’m still Stuck-in-Time with Cinque, Patty Hearst, & the Symbionese-Liberation-Army…

Now that we have a Musical-Retrofitting of The-Panther-Saga, who remembers that there was once a Musical based on Patty Hearst’s Brief-Encounter with Cinque & Crew, including that Bank-Robbery which sent Patty to Prison?

This was Mario Fratti’s Tanya—which failed to foreshadow his Epic-Success with Nine.

Now that Black-Lives-Matter so very much, it is something of a Throwback to see a Young-Inheritor of the Panther-Legacy making Video-Interviews with a View to Reuniting-All-Those-Revolutionaries at a Major-Event, possibly with a Mass-Healing in Prospect.

What those who have never heard of Huey Newton may not realize is that not all the Dissident-Panther-Revolutionaries were Black…

Some of them demanded a Free-Puerto-Rico.

Some of those Angry-Latinos—not in this Public-Production—even shot-up the US-Congress.

One of the Many-Problems in Animating-a-Revolution is that the Protestors-&-Activists often have Diverse-Demands…

Nonetheless, the Dedicated-Cast of Party-People relives those Long-Ago-Passions with Fury, Frenzy, & Fantasy.

One Forlorn-Dissident was writhing in Sorrow-&-Pain right beside me, on a Bleacher-Stair that No-One save Me could see.

There was even some Attempt at Audience-Interaction—which unfortunately Did-Not-Work.

Had I been asked for an Opinion or Reaction, I would have responded: La Lucha? No Hay Remedio…


At The Public-Theatre’s LuEsther-Merz-Space:

Richard Nelson’s WOMEN OF A CERTAIN AGE: Play 3 of The Gabriels: Election Year in the Life of One Family [*****]

Ordinary-People Leading Ordinary-Lives in Donald-Trump-Land—But Not Bigots, Nor Bashers…

What a Wonderful-Acting-Ensemble Author-Director Richard Nelson has assembled for the Metaphoric-Capstone of his Gabriel-Family-Pyramid!

Highest-Praise for Maryann Plunkett, Roberta Maxwell, Meg Gibson, Lynn Hawley, & Amy Warren—All of them Women-of-a-Certain-Age, with the Masculine-Exception of Jay O. Sanders, who provides a kind of Earthy-Ballast in Trump-Terrorism-Times, when the Gabriels must depart from the Longtime-Home they have lost, thanks to a Sub-Prime-Scam.

Where do Infirm & Aged-People Go when there is No-Longer a Home-Base & a Loving, Supportive-Family There-for-Them?

Golden-Acres for Golden-Agers?

Sierra-View for Senile-Seniors?

As a Senior-Single, Living-Alone in New York, now approaching 88-Years-of-Age, this Quintessential-Question has occasionally Occupied-My-Waking-Thoughts & My-Midnight-Nightmares…

Anxiously-Awaiting Election-Returns, the Gabriels are Taking-Stock, looking through Old-Journals, Family-Records, Random-Jottings, & Treasured-Keepsakes…

Is there No-Wifi in Rheinbeck? Why are these Women not checking their Respective e-Mails?

As this is Election-Night-2016—when they really need to Check-the-Returns—their Flat-Screen-TV must be in the Front-Room?

Women-of-a-Certain-Age, for those who Have-Other-Things-To-Do than While-Away an Entire-Evening at Joe Papp’s Public-Theatre—now Dynamically-Programmed by The Honorable Oskar Eustis—is fortunately-limited an Intermissionless-109-Minutes.

This is Silently-Strung-Out in the Opening-Minutes by having the Entire-Cast bring Onstage Various-Props & Foodstuffs which will be variously Diced & Sliced & then Boiled, Baked, Roasted, & Toasted to a Fare-Thee-Well!

Indeed, it all Smells-Good-Enough-to-Eat

Hey, Chef Richard!

Why not invite Your-Audience to Chow-Down on some of those Favorite-Gabriel-Recipes?

Take a Page out of Charlotte Moore’s Irish-Cookbook!

When Irish Rep revives James Joyce’s The Dead up on Fifth-Avenue—across from the Met-Museum, in a Victorian-Mansion dedicated to Irish-Issues—the Entire-Audience, seated with the Entire-Cast, will eat a Catered-Irish-Gourmet-Feast along with the Equity-Actors.

If Irish-Gourmet-Cuisine is not a Contradiction-in-Terms…

No-One may have noticed, but Playwright-Director Richard Nelson is something of a Neo-Con!

No, No, No! Not an Angry, White, Fascist Trumpian-Neo-Con!

Rather, Nelson—with his Apple-Family & Gabriel-Family Ongoing-Dramatic-Franchises—seems to be an Apostle of a New-Naturalism!

When Naturalism surfaced in the Late-19th-Century—as a Deliberate-Reaction to the Prevailing-Diet of Rousing-Romantic-Dramas, High-Flown-Verbal-Tragedies, Frothy-French-Farces, & Elegant-Drawing-Room-Comedies—its Diving into the Lower-Depths of Nitty-Gritty-Actuality worried our Premier-American-Novelist, Henry James [Pace! Edith Wharton!], who actually lived & loved in England, not in Washington-Square.

What, James wondered, would American-Audiences make of such Stage-Fare as:

The Tragedy of The-Broken-Teacup?

The Adventure of a Walk-Around-the-Block?

Fortunately, both Ibsen & Chekhov were ready to beat-back the Rising-Tides of Naturalism.

But, What, I wonder, would be the Dramatic-Effect of Moving Our-Beloved Hallie Foote to Rheinbeck, NY, & Shipping the Entire-Gabriel-Entourage off to Harrison, TX?

Just Asking…

Donald Trump would be glad to ship a Lot-of-Ordinary-People Out-of-State, as long as they were Not Trump’s Kind-of-Angry-Ordinaries.


At The Public-Theatre’s Martinson-Hall:

Lynn Nottage’s SWEAT [*****]

In 2000-AD, Working-Class-Jobs Disappear in Reading, PA, as Shareholder-Profits Multiply:

Angry Victims of Globalization, Factory-Friends Turn on Each-Other, Often with Violence…

There are No-Holds-Barred in this Powerhouse-Production with a Supercharged-Cast dynamically-staged by Kate Whoriskey!

Working with Playwright/Partner Lynn Nottage, Whoriskey spent some years in Reading, getting to know many of the Factory-Workers & Families who were Reduced to Despair & Drugs, or even Effectively-Destroyed, by Wall-Streeters who moved their Factory to Mexico.

But the Powerful-Portraits of Cynthia [Michelle Wilson], Evan [Lance Coadie Williams], Jason [Will Pullen], Oscar [Carlo Albán], Chris [Khris Davis], Stan [James Colby], Tracey [Johanna Day], Jessie [Miriam Shor], & Brucie [John Earl Jelks] are not Interview-Specific.

Rather, they are Everyman & Everywoman: they could be Anyone-of-Us, if we had been Wage-Slaves way back in the Dawn-of-a-New-Century, the Onset of Millennial-Horrors for Donald Trump’s Ordinary-People.

With Projections-&-Video by Jeff Sugg & a Riotous-Bar-Setting by John Lee Beatty—where most of the Non-Stop-Action: Violent, Affectionate, Confrontational, Confidential, & Otherwise occurs—we are whisked by Kate Whoriskey from Lafayette-Street/Astor-Place off to Reading, with Flashbacks between 2000 & 2008.

It is now almost 2017 & the Born-in-America-Working-Class has been almost Destroyed.

Some of the Once-Property-Proud Middle-Class are now Sleeping-in-the-Woods…

Lynn Nottage doesn’t need to say so, but Donald Trump is not going to Bring-Jobs-Back-to-Reading.

Nor to Detroit, Pittsburgh, Raleigh, Omaha, or Little-Rock…

Fortunately, there are still Jobs in Ashland, Oregon, where Bill Rauch, Artistic-Director of the Oregon-Shakespearean-Festival, commissioned & produced Sweat, which was also shown at the Arena-Theatre, in Our-Nation’s-Capital, soon to be Occupied by the Thumping-Trumpers.

If you cannot get a Ticket for Sweat down at the Public, don’t break out into a Sweat yet.

Hamilton at the Public moved on to Broadway & Beyond!

How about a Manhattan-Transfer for Sweat?

Unfortunately, few, if any, Working-Class Theatre-Fans can afford Broadway-Prices…

President-Elect Trump! How about some Free-Tickets for Dispossessed-Americans?

Instead of a Chinese-Wall across the Mexican-Borderlands?


At The Longacre-Theatre:

Chazz Palminteri, Alan Menken, & Glenn Slater’s A Bronx Tale [*****]

Nick Cordero Is a Casual-Killer & a Man-To-Fear Up in the Italianate-Bronx of Long-Ago…

The Mega-Talented Mini-Actor, Hudson Lovero, dynamically-embodies a Basic-Bronx-Boy—who knows Not-To-Snitch.

This wins him—as the Young-Calogero—the Patronage & Quasi-Parentage of the Impeccably-Tailored Sonny, who has taken a Sage-Page from Niccolo Machiavelli’s Advice-to-Princes: Rule by Fear!

But when Calogero—now played by Bobby Conte Thornton—comes into his Young-Manhood, falling in Forbidden-Love with a Charming-Black-Girl [Ariana DeBose] from African-American-Dominated Webster-Avenue—his is in Unknown-Territory.

One-Thing-Is-Certain: If you are going to Amount-to-Anything, you have to Get-Out-of-The-Bronx!

That-Is-Still-True-Today! Even On or Off-Broadway…

Fortunately for all the Lucky-Bronx-Tale-Ticket-Holders, the Colorful-Bronx imagined by Scenic-Designer Beowulf Boritt is Wonderfully-Mobile, its Street-Façades revolving to suggest both Webster-Avenue & Belmont-Avenue, where Sonny holds-sway & Calogero’s Dad is an Honest-&-Decent MTA-Bus-Driver.

When you have a Doo-Wop-Quartet to Set-the-Scene—as well as a Police-Line-Up of Kooky-Criminals with names like Eddy Mush, Frankie Coffeecake. & Jojo the Whale—you are On-the-Money with Costumes by Broadway’s Favorite, William Ivey Long!

Yet another Tony for Billy?

Unlike some Old-Fashioned-Broadway-Musicals which have hopefully Hit-Songs set among Swatches of Plot-Advancing-Dialogue, Bronx Tale is a Sparkling-Lyrical-Seamless-Fabric.

But what else would you expect of Music-&-Lyrics by Alan Menken & Glenn Slater?

Menken has long been Very-Big over in Disney-Territory: Think about The Little Mermaid!

But then there’s also The Little Shop of Horrors…

Slater shares Credits with Menken on The Little Mermaid, but he’s Lord Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Go-To-Guy for School of Rock.

Best-of-All: This Dynamo-Show has been Split-Second-Co-Directed by Robert De Niro & Jerry Zaks.

But neither Bobby nor Jerry could have devised all by themselves all that Colorful-Ethnic-Choreography.

That is the Kinetic-Genius of Sergio Trujillo, who gave Broadway Jersey Boys—which is somewhat Visually-Echoed with the Doo-Wop-Guys.

Do See This Tony-Prone-Show!


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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