Author Archives: Bill Hirschman
Shadowing the 18-hour day when local musicians are first thrown together to rehearse and play opening night of the Miami visit of the national tour of Evita — a job requiring skill, stamina, concentration and discipline to sound as if they have played it together for months.
The Arsht Center is t trying to keep talent in South Florida. They created MiamiArtsJobs.com, a job portal dedicated to helping find employees for Miami’s growing cultural institutions and showcasing great opportunities for people who want careers in all facets of the arts but aren’t sure where to go to find them.
When Mad Cat Theatre Company finds the right groove with the right piece as it has here with Centralia, even hidebound traditionalists need to recalibrate their definitions and expectations of “theater.” It’s clothed in the premise of small town residents putting on a show to raise funds for their town, which was decimated by an environmental disaster.
Lithe and graceful, Ron Hutchins stands out in any theater lobby on opening night, often noticeable for a quiet laugh that sounds like it’s coming up out of a coal chute in the basement. But he’s obviously most comfortable sculpting a dance routine out of human raw materials whether they are highly accomplished professionals or, as often happens, raw young students.
So the Cowardly Lion walks into a gay bar…. That premise pretty reliably lets you know that you must be watching the new edition of Shorts Gone Wild 2, the mildly risqué festival of short plays with a LGBT underpinning.
Sitting under a tent, sweating through the swelter, watching a faithful facsimile of a revival might not seem appealing to your everyday theatergoer. But bring an open mind to Thinking Cap Theatre’s play Church and savor a thought-provoking, exuberant even entertaining evening.
The script for 1969′s Butterflies Are Free, holds up much better than you’d expect at its revival at Broward Stage Door. But while Stage Door’s edition under director Michael Leeds is a pleasant enough afternoon’s diversion of humor and emotion, it’s never terribly compelling and the whole thing could use more pizzazz to make it feel satisfying.
A proposal resurrecting the Coconut Grove Playhouse as a $45 million theater complex likely run by the Arsht Center is being solidified by civic leaders headed by Mike Eidson, chairman of the Arsht’s trust. The previously undisclosed strategy eclipsesthe current county commission agreement to build a smaller facility on the site of the renowned 50-year-old theater.
Theater Shelf, a recurring feature, reviews recently-released books, CDs and DVDs of interest to theater lovers. Some are popular titles like a new Original Cast Recording, others are works you’ll be intrigued by, but didn’t even know about
Michael Leeds is a director, teacher, actor, dancer and songwriter, but this interview shows he is a raconteur with a storehouse of stories ranging from the woman who did an I Love Lucy bit for her audition, to the time he may have upstaged Elizabeth Taylor while wearing a panda suit.