Now & Then, a world premiere musical in Wilton Manors, is a quiet gentle love story told with an inventive twist. But it’s a tale tracing the episodes of an arc so familiar that it might flirt with being boring — except for three redeeming aspects: a lovely score, a time bending book and making the lovers in this very traditional romance a gay couple.
Ronia, the Robber’s Daughter — the first offering of Theatre Lab’s family-friendly series — satisfies the parameters of youth theatre but with a pedigree that transcends its genre, a production bristles with imagination, wit and pathos that resonate across all generations.
Broward Stage Door’s La Cage aux Folles stresses the universal virtues of love and loyalty, delivered with only a wry smile to acknowledge that its protagonists are an aging gay couple including one drag queen. While undeniably entertaining and featuring some rich voices, this edition is noticeably missing some of the pizzazz that the material requires to make it a memorable evening.
An Hour Without TV — in which an abused wife convinces her husband to give her one hour without ESPN so she can tell him she leaving – is easily the most mistitled drama in many years. It crams together every clichéd line and stock situation from shallow television soap operas about deteriorating marriages.
White Guy on the Bus at GableStage is a merciless dissection of race relations in the 21st Century, but stunning plot twists prevent us from explaining much further than a wealthy white businessman strikes up an acquaintanceship with an African-American nursing student on a bus. But superb performances and a fierce script make this a don’t miss.
Area Stage Company’s Cabaret underscores how this warhorse musical still serves, not as a cautionary tale, but as a flat out warning to our current socio-political climate: The production’s fresh vision forces even veteran audiences to appreciate the aforementioned themes with renewed discomfiture.
It’s almost paternalistic to praise New City Players as one of the gutsiest theaters in the region. But with its carefully-wrought and moving production of Constellations, the Players have outgrown the well-meant but limited expectations that arts patrons have of a so-called “fledgling theater.”
No one could accuse the cast of Shorts Gone Wild 6 of being low energy. They spend the production’s interstitial moments cartwheeling, performing splits, engaging in slapdash chicken dances, telling jokes, winking through bawdy double entendres. But most of the plays are less memorable than their spirited introductions.
When Elena Maria Garcia, one of the finest comediennes in the region, and Stuart Meltzer, one of the finest directors, team up to co-write Fuácata! (Or a Latina’s Guide to Surviving the Universe) at Zoetic Stage, it’s cause for celebration.
Worse than Spiderman Turn Off The Dark, the mega-epic The Big Bang may be the most bloated, overwrought, inept, politically incorrect, painfully lame, downright stupidest musical of all time. That Big Bang would be the imaginary extravaganza being hawked at a fictional backer’s audition, not the identically-named romp now at Actors Playhouse and just as delightfully daft and demented as it was there in 2003 and 2005.