Tag Archives: Jeni Hacker
The 44th Carbonell Awards celebration was unique, not simply because it was online, but because of its acknowledgement of the diversity of the theater community. Honoring excellence for 2019, the awards, which have been quietly accused of not reflecting diversity, pointedly went out of its way to be inclusive in its annual celebration.
As we get older, the reality of loss becomes an inescapable fact of life. How we deal with that is the core of Stephen Brown’s Everything is Super Great at Theatre Lab (subtitled “a comedy about what’s missing”). Brown’s look at four troubled lonely people struggling to cope is quietly mordantly funny, but the humor is infused into underlying poignancy and compassion.
Crucial to know about Grindr Mom is that while the heroine is a middle-class pearl-wearing politically conservative Mormon who volunteers once a week at the local school, “The Wife” as she is called in Ronnie Larsen’s script is decidedly engaging, likable and genuinely charming — certainly not a monstrous homophobic bigot.
One definition of classic theater is a piece that not only remains popular or relevant through time, but which can be endlessly reinterpreted or restaged without losing any of its brilliance, Shakespeare’s work being the most obvious example. Zoetic Stage’s latest entry working its way through the Stephen Sondheim canon underscores how Sweeney Todd qualifies.
Usually, Zoetic Stage’s director Stuart Meltzer’s deft work is almost invisible to audience members other than bringing a fresh vision to familiar titles. But his masterful work in The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time is so clearly displayed that his reinvention becomes the “star” of the production.
The stirring musical Fun Home is a detective story in which the mystery is never solved, but the investigator comes to terms with the existence of the enigma. What Zoetic Stage’s triumphant production does better than the Tony-winning production is its depiction of the unalloyed joy and bottomless agony of discovery in that journey.
What the musical Once illustrates on the stage of Actors Playhouse is the unparalleled power of song to capture and then share the pure pain and pleasure of love.
Noises Off is one of the funniest farces written in the English language and a solid match for Actors Playouse talents. The laughs are plentiful, but this production didn’t wring everything out of this piece that you’ve seen done elsewhere.
The Camp, a world premiere drama from the West Boca Theatre Company does not advance the age-old discussion how “good” people can be passively complicit in horrors, but Michael McKeever’s insightful script and a solid cast under Michael Leeds’ direction expertly provide a three-dimensional illustration that forces the audience to query their own souls about their responsibility to oppose evil.
Amazingly, in 2017 with its video games, alt right-antifa strife and uber-sophistication, Our Town is still our town. And no more so than in Miami New Drama’s inventive and often touching production that underscores the values of community in a time when our country seems as divided as it has ever been.