Archive for the ‘Theater’ Category

THEATER: Spend “An Intimate Evening with Death, Herself” [Berkshire on Stage]

Thursday, September 22nd, 2016
Douglass Truth

Douglass Truth

Douglass Truth, a well-known painter, performer and former Berkshires resident who was the first artist to join Pittsfield’s Storefront Artist Project, returns to the Berkshires this month for an art show and series of performances at the Dreamaway Lodge in Becket.

“An Intimate Evening with Death, Herself” is a 90-minute one-woman show about a middle-aged waitress who meets Death in a bar, and 49 days later, replaces him. Douglass Truth is Dorothy, a meatloaf-phobic waitress. She goes to a bar after a bad day on the cafeteria line and meets Tod, who turns out to be the Grim Reaper. In the course of an understated, unpretentious, poignant and tender, droll and massively ambitious performance, Dorothy helps her audience relate to death without flinching and with abundant amusement.

“An Intimate Evening with Death, Herself” will be performed Sunday (September 25) at 8pm, at the Dreamaway Lodge, in Becket. There will be a tip jar available for donations to support Dorothy’s work.

Click to read the rest at Berkshire on Stage.

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Finn Wittrock to Star in Shakespeare & Co.’s “Hamlet” Reading [Berkshire on Stage]

Wednesday, September 21st, 2016
Finn Wittrock

Finn Wittrock

Shakespeare & Company in Lenox will present a staged reading of William Shakespeare’s masterpiece, Hamlet, at 7pm on Saturday, October 8. Featuring Finn Wittrock – of American Horror Story and The Big Short – and other special guests, the reading will be presented in the Tina Packer Playhouse, and will be directed by Kevin G. Coleman, Shakespeare & Company’s Director of Education and a 2016 Tony Award nominee.

A star of stage, film and television, Finn Wittrock grew up with the Company. As a child he appeared in many of the Company’s outdoor Shakespeare productions at The Mount, as well as with Jonathan Epstein in Richard III at the Duffin Theatre in 1999.

Most recently, Wittrock was seen in the Oscar nominated film The Big Short, in which he starred opposite Brad Pitt, Ryan Gosling, Christian Bale and Steve Carell. Wittrock has been a part of the critically-acclaimed series American Horror Story for the last two seasons and he was nominated for an Emmy for his season four portrayal of Dandy Mott. This fall, Finn will be seen with Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling in the film La La Land for Lionsgate. Upcoming theatrical productions include Othello with Daniel Craig and David Oyelowo directed by Sam Gold and The Glass Menagerie with Sally Field.

Click to read the rest at Berkshire on Stage.

Debra Jo Rupp and Mark H. Dold will share “Love Letters” at Barrington Stage Co. [Berkshire on Stage]

Monday, September 19th, 2016

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Barrington Stage Company in Pittsfield is preparing a September treat, a special production of Love Letters, directed by Julianne Boyd and starring BSC favorites Mark H. Dold (Freud’s Last Session, Breaking the Code) and Debra Jo Rupp (Dr. Ruth, All the Way, Kimberly Akimbo). Performances begin on Thursday (September 22), with opening night set for Saturday. The show is slated to run through Sunday, October 2.

A Pulitzer Prize finalist, written by A.R. Gurney, Love Letters is unusual in that it is not so much acted as simply read, with a very naturalistic – and loving – vibe. The heart-warming show has been performed all over the country and by everyone from local actors to some of our biggest stars. Its appeal is catnip for theater lovers. Gurney’s gem is a touching, funny and ultimately moving story of a 50-year old correspondence between two childhood friends whose relationship weathers time and distance.

Click to read the rest at Berkshire on Stage.

FREE: NYS Writers Institute’s Visiting Writers Series Kicks Off on Thursday

Wednesday, September 14th, 2016

The fall lineup for the NYS Writers Institute’s visiting writers series is out, and its chockfull of award winning novelists, poets, journalists, screenwriters, choreographers and more…

Admission is free for all events, except where noted.

Here’s the fall 2016 schedule:

September 15, 7:30pm: Joyce Carol Oates @ UAlbany Performing Arts Center’s Main Theater, Albany. She’s written more that 160 books, and now the award-winning novelist, essayist, poet, playwright engages in a conversation about “The Creative Life.”

(more…)

Bridge Street Theatre’s New Mainstage Opens with “The Tavern” [Berkshire on Stage]

Tuesday, September 13th, 2016

Kane Prestenback as The Vagabond & Louise Pillai as Violet.

Kane Prestenback as The Vagabond & Louise Pillai as Violet.


Catskill’s Bridge Street Theatre, the newest addition to the Hudson Valley theater scene, presents the first full production on its new Mainstage — George M. Cohan’s classic, The Tavern, with performances running from Thursday (September 15) through Sunday, September 25.

On a dark and stormy night, a rural inn shelters an unlikely assortment of oddball characters, including a mysterious vagabond who’s almost certainly not what he appears to be. Kane Prestenback stars as The Vagabond with a cast that features some of the finest local talent in the Hudson Valley region – Gabriel James, Lindsay Cahill, Robert Ragaini, Art Skopinsky Louise Pillai, David Smilow, Elisabeth Henry, Alexandra Doggette, Brett Owen, Keith Mueller and Parker Cross.

When The Tavern originally premiered in 1920, it utterly baffled a majority of the critics. But the play was championed by Robert Benchley, who called it “the biggest night in my theatergoing career, for it marked the birth of something new on the stage, a gorgeous insanity from which it is to be hoped the drama as an institution will never recover.” And by Dorothy Parker, who proclaimed it “an entertainment sent from Heaven, via Mr. Cohan.” The play went on to become one of Cohan’s greatest theatrical successes, one in which he toured the provinces for years once the original production had closed.

Steven Patterson, who helms the current production, previously directed the play to great acclaim to open the 1977 summer season of the Lexington Conservatory Theatre in Lexington. Now, in 2016, Bridge Street Theatre is delighted to share this unique celebration of the joy of theater devised by a titan of 20th century American entertainment with a whole new audience in a gorgeous new performance venue.

Click to read the rest at Berkshire on Stage.

“American Son” Returns to Barrington Stage Co. [Berkshire on Stage]

Monday, September 12th, 2016
Luke Smith, Michael Hayden, Andre Ware and Tamara Tunie (photo: Scott Barrow)

Luke Smith, Michael Hayden, Andre Ware and Tamara Tunie (photo: Scott Barrow)

Following a successful run at Barrington Stage Company in Pittsfield earlier this summer, the critically-acclaimed world premiere play, American Son, returns to the Boyd-Quinson Mainstage from September 14-25. American Son was the winner of the prestigious Laurents/Hatcher Award for Best New Play of 2016.

Written by award-winning playwright Christopher Demos-Brown and directed by Julianne Boyd, American Son stars Tamara Tunie (“Law & Order: SVU”) as Kendra Ellis-Connor; Michael Hayden (Carousel) as Scott Connor; Luke Smith (Peter and the Starcatcher) as Officer Paul Larkin; and Andre Ware (“House of Cards”) as Lt. John Stokes.

This explosive new drama examines our nation’s racial divide through the eyes of an estranged, interracial couple. Over the course of one evening, the couple’s disparate backgrounds collide as they confront an unexpected crisis involving their son, the police, and an abandoned car.

“We had an overwhelming response from audiences and were sold out for many performances of American Son this summer. We want to make this important and relevant play available once again to our Berkshire audiences, especially the young people of Pittsfield. In addition to our evening performances for all theater-goers, we will be presenting four student matinees, three of which will be devoted entirely to Pittsfield and Taconic High School students. Talkbacks will be held after each matinee. We want to engage students directly in conversations about race and bias,” said BSC Artistic Director Julianne Boyd.

Click here to read the rest at Berkshire on Stage

Click here to read a review of American Son

Palace Theatre Announces New Show

Tuesday, August 30th, 2016

The 1997 romantic drama movie “Love Jones” has been transformed into a stage musical, and the touring show show will make a one-night-only stop at Albany’s Palace Theatre at 8pm on Thursday, September 22.

The cast of “Love Jones: The Musical” is jam-packed with A-list soul singers, including Chrisette Michele, Musiq Soulchild, Marsha Ambrosius, Dave Hollister, Raheem DeVaughn and MC Lyte.

Tickets for “Love Jones: The Musical” are on sale now, priced at $35, $45, $65 & $85.

MORE OF TODAY’S NEW CONCERT ANNOUNCEMENTS
The Palace Theatre Announces New Year’s Eve Concert
The Egg Announces New Concert
Concerts and More on Tap at EMPAC at RPI This Fall
FEST: Capital District Scottish Games @ Altamont Fairgrounds This Weekend

THEATER REVIEW: “Tribes” @ Barrington Stage Co. [Berkshire on Stage]

Thursday, August 25th, 2016
C. David Johnson, Deirdre Madigan, Joshua Castille, Justine Salata and Miles G. Jackson (photo: Scott Barrow)

C. David Johnson, Deirdre Madigan, Joshua Castille, Justine Salata and Miles G. Jackson
(photo: Scott Barrow)

Review by Macey Levin

For the deaf, there are four divisions: those born deaf, those who lose their hearing, those who lip read and those who use sign language. Playwright Nina Raines calls them, and other groups, “tribes” in the play of that same name currently at Barrington Stage Company’s Boyd-Quinson Main Stage in Pittsfield.

Tribes is an intriguing play with some flaws. The first scenes introduce a highly dysfunctional North London family. The patriarch, Christopher (C. David Johnson) a self-involved former teacher turned writer, tries to rule his conflicted family with an iron hand and injurious comments. His wife Beth (Deirdre Madigan) argues with him and their two oldest children, who have recently returned to live at home, at the least provocation. Daniel (Miles G. Jackson) is a schizophrenic who has been rejected by a young woman his family abhorred. The daughter Ruth (Justine Salata), a depressive, believes she is an opera singer with an outstanding future. The youngest son Billy (Joshua Castille) attempts to ameliorate the conflicts with measured success. He has learned to speak by lip-reading his family and the guidance of his mother. Christopher feels that if Billy signs there will be a stigma covering his son. He declares, the deaf “…are the Muslims of the handicapped world.”

Into Billy’s life comes Sylvia (Eli Pauley), the child of deaf parents with whom she signs; she tells him she is slowly losing her hearing. Their initially tenuous relationship moves into a love affair; she helps him get his first ever job as a lip reader for the courts when videotapes do not have audio. When he brings Sylvia home to meet the family, she is subjected to an inquisition led by Christopher, especially when he learns she signs. Various confrontations soon develop between Billy and the family as well as with Sylvia.

Click to read the rest at Berkshire on Stage.

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