Saturday, March 26, 2016

BOOTY CANDY @ convergence-continuum

The Liminis
March 25-April 16, 2016

Bob Abelman

Theater at convergence-continuum can, at times, be provocative, profound, perverse and very funny.  Robert O’Hara’s “Bootycandy” is all of these things at once, though not always in balance or with consistently satisfying results.  

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

Roy Berko
 

BOOTY CANDY, as is true with most con-con plays, will please many (including me), and offend others. It is funny, revealing and generally well-staged. As publicity for the show states, “PLEASE BE ADVISED:  This play is called BOOTY CANDY, so they’ll be talking about booty, and show some booty.  That means strong language, mature themes, and full nudity.  You’ve been warned!” 

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

Christine Howey
While there are some glitches in this balls-to-the-wall satire of some familiar cultural stereotypes, the ribald humor is often howlingly funny. 


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

Andrea Simakis

You'll laugh!  You'll cry!  You'll take offense!  

To see a full review of this show, read Andrea Simakis' blog or visit Cleveland.com here.

Monday, March 14, 2016

A KID LIKE JAKE @ NONE TOO FRAGILE THEATER


Through March 26, 2016
330-671-4563

Bob Abelman

‘A Kid Like Jake’ is a captivating, contemporary Cinderella story.

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

Roy Berko


A KID LIKE JAKE is a well-developed, thought-provoking script, centering on the contemporary topics of gender identity, parental relationships, and the controversy of nature versus nurture.  The acting is excellent.  It is the type of production that incites discussion and will be appealing to a thinking audience. 

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

Kerry Clawson


In A KID LIKE JAKE, Rachel Lee Kolis gives a heartbreaking performance as stressed-out mom Alex, willfully blind to who her child really is even though she professes to know him best. Sensitively directed by Sean Derry at None Too Fragile Theater, the play presents a raw, often harrowing tale of the great pressure moneyed, anxious parents put on themselves to make the right decisions for their youngsters.

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

Christine Howey

Director Sean Derry has summoned a talented cast to handle this 100-minute production, but even the best efforts of these accomplished actors can't overcome Pearle's talky script, one that only strikes sparks near the very end. 

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


Tuesday, March 8, 2016

THE 39 STEPS @ BLANK CANVAS THEATRE


Through March 19, 2016
440-941-0458

Bob Abelman

Blank Canvas has prioritized silly over stylized for its production of "The 39 Steps" which, while playful and thoroughly entertaining, is pedestrian.

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

Roy Berko


THE 39 STEPS is a farcical romp which gets a good, but not great production.  If your theater liking is for improbable plot twists, and extended ridiculousness, the Blank Canvas production makes for a chucklefest and should delight you.  

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

Mark Horning

If you are a fan of Hitchcock, spy movies, murder mysteries and slapstick all combined, this is the show for you.  A thoroughly engaging cast that keeps the laughs going all show long.

To see a full review of this show, read Mark Horning's blog.

Christine Howey


It’s hard to find a whole show that’s as funny and engaging as the first act of The 39 Steps. A treasure trove for Hitchcock fans, and everyone else for that matter.

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


MAMMA MIA @ PLAYHOUSE SQUARE


March 8 through 13, 2016
216-241-6000

Bob Abelman

“So when you're near me, darling can't you hear me S.O.S.”  These are more than the lyrics to one of the many songs by Swedish pop group Abba that make up Benny Andersson and Bj√∂rn Ulvaeus’ global smash hit musical “Mamma Mia!”  They are a desperate cry for help from the national tour, which came through Cleveland in 2002, 2004, 2008, 2009 and 2012, and is once again on stage – this time in cardiac arrest – at Playhouse Square.


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

Mark Horning

If you’re a fan of ABBA and are looking for a nice evening of escapism you can do no worse than to “Take A Chance” with “Mamma Mia.”  This feel good musical gives you nearly two dozen hits that are all ‘sing along’ strong.  Bring your gal pals for a night out!

To see a full review of this show, read Mark Horning's blog.


Monday, March 7, 2016

THE REVISIONIST @ DOBAMA THEATRE


Through April 3, 2016
216-932-3396

Bob Abelman


This is a lovely story but, as with the early works of many fledgling authors, it is thinly told and full of implausible, forced and structurally graceless moments. What should be a small, delicate watercolor portrait is rendered with expressionistic subjectivity, broad strokes and unrefined technique. Fortunately, it fell into the hands of director Leighann Delorenzo. Her delicate touch has tapped all that is heartfelt and beguiling in the script. And her eye for casting has allowed it to take form on stage.

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

Roy Berko


Though there are flaws in the writing, Dobama’s THE REVISIONIST is a must see to experience the great Dorothy Silver and the very talented Andrew Gombas.  These performances deserve a standing ovation!


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

Mark Horning


If you have yet to get your fill of the strangeness that this theater season seems bent on providing, then “The Revisionist” is your cup of vodka.  Dorothy Silver reminds us all that it is after all the actor that makes the show as her small nuances give light to a burdensome script.  In anybody else’s hands this play would suffer terribly.  Dorothy saves the day with her fantastic talent.

To see a full review of this show, read Mark Horning's blog.

Christine Howey


Director Leighann DeLorenzo enables Dorothy Silver to do her thing, crafting every word and gesture with the specificity, intelligence and wit that have long been the trademark of her performances. You must see The Revisionist for that reason, since any other reasons pale in comparison.

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

Andrea Simakis

Though she has a knack for making any role feel organic, her Maria is one for the ages. Whether delivering lines in seamlessly accented English or bantering with Zenon in Polish, Silver gives us a woman who has decided she'd rather be surrounded by ghosts of her own making than the real ghouls of her childhood.  The final tableau featuring Silver, alone again and back on that worn couch, in an image reminiscent of Edvard Munch's "The Scream," is the very definition of grief.

To see a full review of this show, read Andrea Simakis' blog or visit Cleveland.com here.