REVIEW: Cinderella a real Cinderella story

REVIEW: Cinderella a real Cinderella story

In 1957, I joined over an astonishing 100 million North Americans to watch a live, black-and-white telecast of a new Rogers and Hammerstein musical Cinderella. The show featured that rising new Broadway star, a pre-Oscar Julie Andrews. The design was spectacular and the music was lovely – although not really up to the best of […]

Rock opera dares to suggest Jesus human

Rock opera dares to suggest Jesus human

When Jesus Christ Superstar was released in 1970, it was condemned by many Christian groups because it dared to suggest that Christ was human and Judas was a tragic figure. At the time, lyricist Tim Rice observed, “It happens that we don’t see Christ as God, but simply the right man at the right time […]

REVIEW: Starcatcher flies like Peter Pan

REVIEW: Starcatcher flies like Peter Pan

Avast there, matey, prepare to go aloft! And I abide that ye’ll have a crew of plundering picaroons at yer back. The Citadel’s current show Peter and the Starcatcher does briefly soar aloft, but that comes later. James MacDonald’s rollicking, inventive production starts small with what is known as “physical theatre,” or the more poetic […]

PLAYBILL: Elektra electrifying

PLAYBILL: Elektra electrifying

Today’s spooky teens have nothing on the ancient Greeks. Kids in those days didn’t have smartphones – just lots of time on their hands and easy access to a wide variety of poisons and deadly weapons. Got a lot of rending and hewing to do. Edmonton Opera’s latest show Elektra is about as edgy as […]

Crazy for You makes old hat new again

Crazy for You makes old hat new again

You want an escape from the March blahs? Crazy for You, the joyous “New Gershwin Musical” playing at the Citadel Theatre until March 26, is just the medicine you need for melancholy. This two hours and 40 minutes of grace, wit and great music is part screwball, part vaudeville, part Busby Berkeley and all cheerfully […]

Stupid Fucking Bird gives wing to Chekhov

Stupid Fucking Bird gives wing to Chekhov

Anton Chekhov is best known outside of Russia as a playwright of yearning disappointment, unrequited love, missed opportunities and unsatisfactory relationships. He actually thought he was writing a comedy when he penned a play called The Seagull in 1896 – and therein lies a part of the problem. According to those who know about these […]

Ah, Romance! welcome as spring breeze

Ah, Romance! welcome as spring breeze

“In spring a young man’s fancy lightly turns to thoughts of love,” burbled Tennyson in 1835. Apparently, so does the fancy of Edmonton’s accomplished Plain Jane Theatre Company, whose latest offering Ah, Romance! A Revue of Song, Dance and Other Passionate Musings, is on stage at the Varscona Theatre until Feb. 25. The Plain Janes, […]

REVIEW: Kinky Boots a really good shoe

REVIEW: Kinky Boots a really good shoe

Back in 1983, a punk princess in goofy makeup, bargain basement wardrobe and disordered hairdo told the world that Girls Just Wanna Have Fun. The world listened. Cyndi Lauper’s music and fizzy personality was bright, happy and upbeat. She became the queen of the newly emerging MTV, went on to reign in every nook of […]

Detective farce a riot at Mayfield

Detective farce a riot at Mayfield

We’re going to get quite a bit of Ken Ludwig in Edmonton in the next while. On March 4, the Citadel opens his Gershwin musical, Crazy For You – and in the meantime, until April 2, fans can see his comic take on the sleuth of 221B Baker Street at the Mayfield Dinner Theatre: Baskerville, […]

Bust hits close to home for Theatre Network

Bust hits close to home for Theatre Network

For a company dedicated to presenting local productions, it’s hard to imagine a more Albertan show than Theatre Network’s current offering, Bust. At the Roxy on Gateway until Feb. 26, Matthew MacKenzie’s play takes place in Fort McMurray just after the great fire in May of 2016. It features two couples trying to cope with […]

Dinner party implodes in powerful Disgraced

Dinner party implodes in powerful Disgraced

Ayad Akhtar’s Pulitzer Prize-winning play Disgraced is a worthy member of a theatrical sub-genre that might be described as the “imploding dinner party.” A group of people gather in a living room for an evening of civil conversation, there are already tensions in the air when the evening starts and everything goes south from there. […]

Gender a moot point in powerful Henry V

Gender a moot point in powerful Henry V

Shakespeare’s Henry V is the most manly of kings. In his earlier play, Henry IV, the Bard gives us the wild, undisciplined wastrel known as “Prince Harry,” who together with his partner in excess Falstaff probes the depths of dissipation. But in Henry V we see a new man born. The former rake assumes the […]

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