Posted in May 2009

Grapevine groovy: Under the Yum Yum Tree

1960 was a banner year for spectacular Broadway shows with stars at the top of their game. Camelot opened, with Richard Burton and Julie Andrews. Bye Bye Birdie brought a first rock n roll score to Broadway musicals. The Sound of Music, featuring Mary Martin, won the Best Musical Tony. The Fantasticks thrilled off Broadway … Continue reading

Heavenly Audacity: T3 Lost in the Stars

In his 1949 Broadway opening-night review of Kurt Weill’s Lost in the Stars, New York Times critic Brooks Atkinson commented: “Mr. Weill has given the theatre some fine scores, but… it is difficult to remember anything out of his portfolio as eloquent as this richly orchestrated singing music… overflowing with the same compassion that Mr. … Continue reading

FETTUCCINE Fake-Out: the 2004 Iowa Presidential Caucus

I’m from California.  Politics here ranges in spirit and style from Kabuki to Spielberg.  We Golden State folks just recalled a poker-faced career politico, duly elected governor by a reasonable percentage of the population, and replaced him with an inexperienced B-Grade actor who smiles handsomely for the media cameras and can’t pronounce the state’s name.  … Continue reading

Spirited tragedy: Sundown Collaborative’s OTHELLO

Attending a production of Shakespeare’s Othello is like watching a high profile match between two of the world’s greatest prizefighters. Its success depends on the relationship of its two main characters, no matter who else exists in the play or how it’s produced. Othello v. Iago: a classic battle between the soul of integrity and … Continue reading

All aboard: NIBROC Trilogy at Theatre Three

Seize the day. Brighter than any star and living often in larger than life terms, barely into their twenties, the Greatest Generation possessed an intangible and incomparable grace. Courage, vision, honoring one’s word, a pro-active work ethic: they not only understood the importance of integrity and character, they seized every opportunity presented to live lives … Continue reading

River of Ponies

Exactly how I became known as “the pony lady”, I’ll never know.  It was never my intention.  I considered my enterprising twenty-something self a serious trainer of horses. Horses. When I flung open my barn doors for business, I posted professionally designed, informative flyers advertising nationally certified riding lessons, coaching and schooling at all county … Continue reading

Merry Mayhem: Lyric Stage’s AS THOUSANDS CHEER

Well before Tom Lehrer, That Was the Week That Was, Laugh-in, the Smothers Brothers, Sonny and Cher and SNL mixed variety show entertainment with political and social commentary to the delight of satire-hungry contemporary audiences, composer/ lyricist Irving Berlin hunkered down with creative writer Moss Hart and came up with a fresh-seeming concept revue requiring … Continue reading

Plain Sarah: DTC work in progress

Sarah, Plain and Tall makes a powerful visual impression. It’s a family friendly musical based on Patricia MacLachlan 1986 Newberry Award-winning novella. Dallas Theater Center Artistic Director Kevin Moriarty chose to mount it as the company’s final production at the Kalita Humphreys venue, before the huge move to the new Dallas Performing Arts Center. The … Continue reading