Tuesday, July 31, 2012

THE SOUND OF MUSIC
PORTHOUSE THEATRE
July 26 through August 12
http://dept.kent.edu/theatre/porthouse/ShowInfo.htm or 330-929-4416 or 330-672-3884

Bob Abelman

Unlike its recent production of “Damn Yankees,” which imploded under the weight of its own datedness, the Porthouse Theatre's “The Sound of Music” is delivered on gossamer wings and as fresh as when first produced for the stage in 1959 and then on film in 1965.

To see a full review of this show, read Bob Abelman's blog here.

Roy Berko


Porthouse’s THE SOUND OF MUSIC is a crowd pleaser that brings out the best of the script through good pacing, fine singing, dancing and line interpretation.
To see a full review of this show, read Roy Berko's blog here.

Kerry Clawson

The classic Rodgers and Hammerstein musical The Sound of Music is bursting with heart at Porthouse Theatre in a joyful production directed by artistic director Terri Kent.

Every detail — from a massive, beautifully hand-painted mountain mural to the thrilling harmonies reverberating from the nuns' sacred music — shows this production has been mounted with loving care.
To see a full review of this show, read Kerry Clawson's review here.

Fran Heller
This "Sound of Music" is a satisfying summer evening's entertainment for all ages. Guaranteed you'll be humming all the way home.

To see a full review of this show, read Fran Heller's review at the Cleveland Jewish News

Christine Howey

This production of the Broadway classic at Porthouse Theatre offers plenty for the S of M lovers to wrap their arms around. Director Terri Kent keeps the long show clipping along while milking some genuine emotion out of a couple touching scenes.


To see a full review of this show, read Christine Howey's review at  Cleveland Scene

Saturday, July 14, 2012


MAMMA MIA!
PALACE THEATRE/PLAYHOUSE SQUARE
July 13-22, 2012
216-241-6000 or www.playhousesquare.org

Bob Abelman


The attraction to "Mamma Mia" is purely chemical, as if the pulsating rhythms, infectious  lyrics and likable characters generate a rush of endorphins that render all things pleasurable despite the mind suggesting—no, screaming—otherwise.  

To see a full review of this show, read Bob Abelman's News-Herald article here.

Kory

Take ABBA’s library of hits, mix in a storyline about a girl who wants to meet her Dad, the three potential candidates, a confused mom, a former girl band, hot guys and set it against the backdrop of a beautiful taverna in the Greek islands and you have Mamma Mia!

To see a full review of this show, read Kory's blog here.

Roy Berko

The newest revival of MAMA MIA! is once again an audience pleasing delight.  If you haven’t seen it before, go!  If you have, go again!  This is an excellent touring company!

To see a full review of this show, read Roy Berko's blog here.


Christine Howey
Mamma Mia! will run forever, giving middle-aged actors the chance to dress in 1970's rock drag, and middle-aged audience members the opportunity to remember when they could boogie with the best of them.

To see a full review of this show, read Christine Howey's blog Rave and Pan

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

A MIDSUMMER NIGHT'S DREAM
Ohio Shakespeare Festival
July 5-July 22  Stan Hywet Hall & Gardens
http://ohioshakespeare.com or 330-673-8761


Kerry Clawson
A Midsummer Night’s Dream is a joy to behold at Ohio Shakespeare Festival. Neither the director nor the actors hold back in this beloved comedy, giving birth to numerous moments of over-the-top fun.  Benjamin Fortin, who will be a junior at Kent State, has come into his own with his wildly funny portrayal of the mechanical Flute, who takes on a skirt role in Pyramus and Thisbe, the outrageous play-within-the-play.
To see a full review of this show, read Kerry Clawson's review here.

Christine Howey
Each of the actors in this production could be called out for individual accolades. But it is the tight ensemble performance, and the joy that emanates from it, that makes this Dream a keeper.

For more details, see Christine Howey's full review at Cleveland Scene.


Friday, July 6, 2012


LEGALLY BLONDE
Beck Center for the Arts
July 6-August 12, 2012
http://www.beckcenter.org/theater or 216-521-2540

Bob Abelman

A meringue of a musical comedy, “Legally Blonde” requires those in attendance to leave their brains at the door. However, the upbeat and deceptively complicated music, Martín Céspedes’ delightful I’m-a-pretty-girl choreography, and a talented ensemble of players results in a production that is fun clear down to the follicles.

To see a full review of this show, read Bob Abelman's News-Herald article here.


Roy Berko


Beck’s  LEGALLY BLONDE THE MUSICAL makes for a delightful evening/afternoon of entertainment.  The cast is generally excellent, the script fun, the score good, and the chorography outstanding!  Go see this one!
To see a full review of this show, read Roy Berko's blog here.

Fran Heller 

With a convoluted book...that stretches credulity...and...undistinguished pop-inspired score...this featherweight show about female empowerment is geared to young teens of the fairer sex.
The two-and-a-half hour densely packed production...is long and laborious, with occasional rays of sunshine that break through the clouds of this dizzying and saccharine souffle of a musical. 


To see a full review of this show, read Fran Heller's review at the Cleveland Jewish News

Christine Howey

Instead of being a frothy lark, Legally Blonde at Beck seems an overly long exercise in trying to have fun. And that's never as much fun as it should be.

To see a full review of this show, read Christine Howey's review at  Cleveland Scene

Kory

Omigod You Guys! The Beck Center has a hit on their hands with Legally Blonde!

To see a full review of this show, read Kory's blog here.



ONCE UPON A MATTRESS
Mercury SummerStock
July 6-21, 2012
http://www.mercurysummerstock.com/buytickets.html or 216-771-5862

Roy Berko
 
If your purpose for going to the theatre, as the program suggests, is to” escape, laugh and let your imagination soar,” then you’ll enjoy ONCE UPON A MATTRESS.  It’s filled with much cleverness, laughs and visual pleasure, but misses out on more due to some misguided performances.

To see a full review of this show, read Roy Berko's blog here.


Christine Howey
 
What is required is a tight production with sharp comic actors in key roles. And despite the many minor miracles that this talented company often pulls off, here they struggle to make the play work at all.
To see a full review of this show, read Christine Howey's blog Rave and Pan

Kory

Mercury Summer Stock takes the hilarious Once Upon A Mattress to new heights!

To see a full review of this show, read Kory's blog here.

Marjorie Preston

The strengths of Mercury Summer Stock’s current musical production, “Once Upon a Mattress,” a modern retelling of “The Princess and the Pea,” lie in sharp comedic timing and witty rapport between characters. This production is over-the-top funny.  [The show] included lots of fun extras, with asides, inside jokes, actors breaking the fourth wall, and modern references theater lovers will find highly amusing.  “Once Upon a Mattress” is a bubbly, stylized show sure to please."

To see a full review of this show, read Marjorie Preston's blog or visit Cleveland.com here.





THE WORLD GOES 'ROUND
Porthouse Theatre--Kent State
July 5-21, 2012
330-672-3884 or http:dept.kent.edu/theatre/porthouse/ticketinfo.htm

Roy Berko

Musical revues tend not to be my favorite form of theatre.  I prefer storylines.  But, more productions like  THE WORLD GOES ROUND, as directed and choreographed by Sean Morrissey, could make a review lover out of me.  Go to Porthouse. Sit back and relax, and let the talented and well directed cast carry you away on a fine musical trip to Kanter and Ebb’s Broadway.
 
To see a full review of this show, read Roy Berko's blog here.


Kerry Clawson

Most people know Kander and Ebb best from their cynical, darker shows Chicago and Cabaret. But the musical revue The World Goes ’Round, which debuted off-Broadway in 1991, is most memorable for its yearning love songs, which unfold effortlessly through the talented young professional cast members at Porthouse. The 12 young actors sing their hearts out in a production that’s sophisticated, slick, funny and entertaining.

To see a full review of this show, read Kerry Clawson's review here.


Christine Howey

Director and choreographer Sean Morrissey has tutored his charges well, and come up with some inventive staging twists that keep things interesting. The result is a plethora of musical delights, just right for a summer evening.

To see a full review of this show, read Christine Howey's blog Rave and Pan